From the banning of plastic bags at supermarkets to the replacing of straws made from plastic with those that were made from paper, a lot of eco-friendly packaging alternatives were starting to hit the market in what looked like a potential wave of change.
But that all changed when the pandemic arrived. Many of the supermarkets who had previously decided to forgo the use of plastic bags reverted back to using them as it was thought that single-use plastic bags were safer options while dealing with the virus.
There were various other types of single-use plastic items that had been on the way out due to consumer ecological demands that ultimately ended up coming back into daily use. Single-use plastics have been proven to be a safer packaging material to use during the pandemic for reasons of hygiene. The only problem is, it has come to light that the science behind these claims are not on solid ground.
As mentioned in the article above, there is little scientific evidence to suggest that plastics offer any additional protection to personal hygiene compared to other packaging alternatives, specifically eco-friendly materials.
As we move into 2021, earth-friendly packaging alternatives are going to continue to be a hot button issue as environmentally-minded consumers continue to push back against the re-implementation of single-use plastics.
Some of the cutting edge more eco-friendly alternatives to watch in 2021 include bio-plastic alternatives such as biodegradable shrink films which are made from plant-based materials.
Right now, there are very few companies producing these bio-films and the materials are often more expensive than traditional plastic shrink films. If you’re interested in the potential of these bio-films, we created an article comparing biodegradable shrink films and recyclable shrink films.