The value of “bioplastic” for the circular economy (and the changing environment) –

They have the same function as plastic bags, but they must be disposed of in the wet, together with apple peels and coffee grounds. And once they reach their end of life they can be used to fertilize the land. Bioplastic bags, those found in the fruit department at the supermarket, but also packaging, plates or disposable glasses have the added value of being biodegradable and compostable. Two adjectives that must necessarily be placed side by side so that this value is not wasted. In fact, if by biodegradable we mean that an object has the ability to be converted into water, carbon dioxide and mineral salts under the action of biological agents, such as plants and bacteria, we cannot think that this authorizes its dispersion in the environment.

When we talk about bioplastics, we are referring to a product alternative to traditional plastic, with low impact and high performance. But there is not only this: there are many details concerning this material that are worth investigating, from their birth to the concept of circular economy they contain, from the production of packaging to their organic recycling. For this reason, tomorrow, free of charge, together with Corriere della Sera, the book will be published: The green challenge of bioplastics – What they are, why they are changing the market. With Italy in the front row.

But how many types of bioplastics are there? How do they recognize each other? An entire chapter devoted to answering these questions. Thus we discover that not necessarily a bio-based bag, of biological origin, such as those derived from fruits or algae, compostable, and that a stringent European legislation is currently in force on the requirements to be met for the issue of certification. But the discussion cannot ignore the in-depth analysis of separate waste collection, in particular that of wet waste, which is useful for the production of compost used to fertilize the land. Several chapters of the volume are dedicated to this theme, with a focus on the case of Milan, which currently collects over double the organic waste of any other European city with the door-to-door system. But if individual citizens are invited to give their contribution by making a correct separate collection, also entrepreneurs and packaging producers must be the architects of the change upstream of the production chain, a fundamental theme dealt with in the chapter dedicated to the industrial chain. Also for this reason, the book tells of the birth of Biorepack, right in Italy (within the Conai system), the first European consortium that deals with certified biodegradable and compostable packaging and guarantees its collection, collection, recovery and recycling.


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