Biopac’s Statement on Plastics and Ocean Waste

In light of recent news regarding waste in the ocean, in particular plastic disposables and straws, Biopac has thought it best to offer our thoughts on the ongoing issues with disposables and the plastics industry as a whole.

Whilst we are proud of our stance regarding the environment and sustainable options, when it comes to ocean waste, compostable products are not the solution. For composting to take effect, the products must be in a warm aerobic environment which allows micro-organisms to break them down. Neither of these conditions are met in an ocean, or any other body of water. Correct disposal is the key factor in reducing waste, this concerns both conventional plastics for recycling, and our own biodegradable ranges which are fully compostable and should not end up in landfill.

As there is always likely to be a need for disposable products, what we must all address is the combined lack of consumer awareness and infrastructure in the UK. Disposal routes for composting and recycling are fragmented throughout the country, and vary depending on the local council’s thoughts towards waste. The food to go sector has grown rapidly in recent years, producing a boom in single-use items, the UK’s waste management service has been unable to keep up with this change in use leading to the issues we currently face.

With the debate firmly in the public eye, Biopac is hopeful that a long term solution can be found to update the infrastructure and adopt a sustainable option for the future. We appreciate that whilst compostable products are an excellent addition to the market, there are still situations which require conventional plastics. A modern system that can process both compostable products and conventional plastics is what the UK should aim for, by providing this, the “problem” of single-use plastics would largely be mitigated.

We are happy to hear the issue of single-use disposables raised in parliament. Now that the Government is focussing on the problem, perhaps we can move towards a workable solution. Biopac would like to make clear that a tax on plastics is not the solution. This merely punishes a thriving part of the UK food industry, all food to go and delivery retailers for example rely on this form of packaging and have no alternative to use. A key responsibility lies with the UK Government to provide suitable disposal routes, which our European neighbours have already established.

* Biopac are specialists in compostable packaging and their disposal. For any queries on how to dispose of our products, or would just like to have a chat about anything packaging related we are always available. Contact Biopac on 01386 555 777 or email

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