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Compostable or recyclable, what does forecast say?


I am wondering if we should start this year to replace conventional packaging, ideally #recyclable, with home #compostable material to be ready by the end of 2023?

This question could seem bizarre, but there are facts and motivations behind it… The goal of forecasting is not to predict the #future but to tell you what you need to know to take meaningful action in the present.


First, there is a change in country waste management policies:

For example, in France, the obligation to sort biological/food household waste in a dedicated bin (brown bin) no later than 01/01/2024, should create an actual opportunity for using more compostable packaging. This is already mandatory is some cities in Europe.

Sorting household organic waste mandatory by the end of 2023

Packaging #recycling is increasing but remains low for flexible packaging (in France, only 5% of flexible packaging is recycled) - Composting can be an additional aid to manage waste and an alternative to #incineration. These approaches help the world cut down on plastic #waste.





Secondly, consumers have a good perception and welcome use of compostable packaging.

A survey, conducted by TIPA and IPSOS in 2020, examined the habits and expectations of French consumers in terms of waste and packaging management. 89% of consumers consider compostable packaging to be a healthy and environmentally friendly #substitute for plastic packaging (69 % in the UK).

89 % of French & 69 % of British consumers welcome compostable packaging.

Finally: cheaper innovative new materials or high-performance barrier materials are rising, enabling adequate product protection.

  • #Flexible material made with #agricultural waste with competitive pricing vs PE films.

  • #Fibre based, barrier or not, packaging which can be either composted or recycled.

  • New commercial #capacity for new material is increasing and helping to commoditise the new generation of compostable packaging.

  • New compostable & renewable material for fitment/insert in #e-commerce parcel.

The production of biodegradable plastics is expected to increase to 1.33 million in 2024, especially due to PHA’s growth rates (European Bioplastics)- Still low but progressing!

Will 2023 be the year of compostable packaging? This is truly a question to answer for consumer or e-commerce packaging. Many solutions exist in a competitive landscape. It is vital to look at:

  • Impact on #climate change and #water footprint of the selected raw material/crop.

  • The right packaging #expertise.

  • Development of effective #alliance (manufacturer-user) as appropriate.


What is coming next? The Climate and Resilience Bill (2021) requires for supermarket of more than 40,000 m2 to have 20% of their sales area dedicated to bulk by 2030: Opportunity for #reusable/#deposit packaging…

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