APCO tackles confusion over compostable plastic waste

The Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation (APCO) has published a new guide to reduce confusion over compostable plastic packaging.

“Considerations for Compostable Plastic Packaging” is aimed at helping brand owners, packaging technologists and designers, and food service providers decide when and where to use certified compostable plastic packaging, and associated items like cutlery.

The guideline identifies the key potential applications and opportunities for certified compostable plastic packaging, with a strong emphasis on packaging that could also facilitate the collection of food waste.

These include food caddy liners, fruit and vegetable stickers, and “closed-loop” situations, such as festivals.

Recommendations are also provided about how to better communicate with end-consumers, including accurate certification and correct language for labelling and marketing.

Statements to avoid are also highlighted, including the misleading terminology and “greenwashing” claims that are currently contributing to unintentional litter and contamination of the mechanical recycling system.