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Published - 2021/03/15

Industry & services

Bioplastics: a real solution or a false one?

The world of bioplastics has exploded, partly driven by increasing government support which has been instrumental in driving the growth of the bioplastic packaging market. Bioplastics as a term encompasses a wide range of materials. Yet the word “bioplastic” often carries a narrow connotation of a compostable, plant-based plastic with limited functionality and a prohibitive cost.

Bioplastics: a real solution or a false one?

Sustainability, particularly regulatory and public concerns around single-use packaging waste, combined with other powerful trends has resulted in some major changes in packaging consumption. Global regulators are moving closer to regulating bioplastics, and companies and retailers are proactively making bold commitments to improve both the sustainability of their packaging and to fundamentally rethink their packaging systems.

For packaging converters with the right focus and innovation capabilities, the new landscape could offer significant growth and new partnership opportunities to support customers in revising their packaging portfolios. Going forward, converters will have to proactively embrace sustainability issues as consumer demands and regulatory requirements multiply.

But what is bioplastic? Is it the same as biobased plastic, biodegradable plastic or compostable plastic? And how recyclable is bioplastic? Some see bioplastic as a false solution. Many see it as THE solution if we succeed in controlling the recycling chain! Market analysts predict that the bioplastic market will continue to grow post-Covid. However, consumers are clearly not informed enough, and neither are legislators nor many brand owners. This fragmented image will threaten long term development.

At Opticom, we help many global companies in the packaging industry. We know what consumers, customers, designers, legislators and other key stakeholders around the world want. And we see these challenges, with all the wonderful opportunities they offer, not least for the packaging industry and we take an active role in this process of change. Because we help create value for companies around the world by transforming data and knowledge into strategic advice and efficient communication.

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