There are many benefits of using biodegradable plates. These, and other forms of biodegradable food containers, offer an environmentally friendly alternative to traditional disposable items.
Disposable plates, bowls, drinks cups and other forms of food containers help to give us the option of eating away from home. In addition to social occasions, such as picnics or barbecues, many people eat away from home at school, work or in other environments. Disposable food containers are also a great convenience when holding a party or catering for a large number of people. While disposable food containers are a real convenience, they also have a negative impact on the environment. Some traditional styles of disposable containers are made using non sustainable resources or from materials that will not decompose. Food containers made from biodegradable materials combine the flexibility and convenience of disposable food containers with the environmental benefits of being fully biodegradable.
Benefits of Using Biodegradable Plates
The benefits of using biodegradable products are many fold. Biodegradable plates are typically made from bagasse, which is a material that is made from sugar cane. This is a widely available renewable and sustainable resource. Biodegradable plates made from bagasse will decompose over time and do not have the same negative impact on the environment as non-biodegradable plates and other containers. There are a wide range of biodegradable plates available. This includes small plates which are ideal for children's parties through to large plates with lids that are well suited for larger meals or for entertaining. Biodegradable paper plates can be purchased online as well as from specialty stores. Online stores that offer a range of different plates and food containers include:
Disposing of Biodegradable Plates and Other Food Containers
In order to fully realize the benefits of using biodegradable plates and other food containers, it is necessary to dispose of them properly. In order to decompose, items that are manufactured from compostable materials should not be placed in landfills. Instead, they should be composted in home or at local authority composting facilities. Some materials, such as oils, may affect the compostability of a product so it is important to refer to the manufacturer's instructions regarding the best way to dispose of a particular item.
Alternatives to Biodegradable Food Containers
While there are environmental benefits with biodegradable plates, food containers and plastic bags, there are also drawbacks. The fact that they are disposable means that there has been an investment in energy and resources to make an item that is only to be used once. Even if the materials are from a sustainable resource, the energy used in manufacturing, delivery to a store, delivery to a home and in waste disposal still needs to be taken into account. It could be argued that a more environmentally friendly option is resusable plates and other containers. While these may not have the flexibility and convenience of disposable items, reusable items can work out to be more cost effective as well as reduce waste.
The benefits of using biodegradable plates are extensive, but even so, the issues regarding the use of disposable products need to be weighed against the environmental impact. For occasions where reusable plates and other containers are impractical, biodegradable or compostable plates can be a great alternative.