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Terms and Definitions

Ingeo™ - PLA:

  • Polylactic Acid (technical name)
  • Made by NatureWorks LLC
  • Created entirely from 100% US-grown plants like corn, not oil
  • Sugars/starches are extracted from plants and converted into a polymer
  • Polymer is made into a resin that can be converted or thermoformed into usable products

Key Benefits:

  • Looks & feels like regular plastic
  • Saves 65% of the resources versus conventional plastics
  • Made from renewable resources
  • Compostable

Ingeo™-Lined Paperboard:

  • Ingeo™ replaces petroleum based liners
  • Creates a leak-proof lining for hot cups & soup cups
  • Offers a renewable alternative to conventional products lined with petroleum-based plastic

Sugarcane (Bagasse):

  • “Leftovers” from processing sugarcane, primarily grown for cane juice
  • Previously, stalk was incinerated or thrown away
  • Now, stalk is broken down into a pulp that can be molded into products

Key Benefits:

  • Compostable
  • Saves Trees
  • Renewable and reclaimed
  • Grease-resistant
  • Microwave-safe, freezer safe
  • Feels like paper, but is less expensive

PSM:

  • Plant Starch Material (technical name)
  • Created from plant based starches and biodegradable fillers
  • Previously created from potato starch, recent technology is using a variety of plant starches
  • Functional for hot and cold foods (to 220 degrees F.)

Renewable Resource:

“Resources that are created or produced at least as fast as they are consumed, so that nothing is depleted. If properly managed, renewable energy resources (e.g.., solar, hydro, wind power, biomass, and geothermal) should last as long as the sun shines, rivers flow, wind blows, and plants grow.” – www.greendepot.com

Biodegradable:

A material that will decompose into naturally occurring, harmless components with exposure to air, sunlight and/or moisture. No timelines are established for breakdown. Examples: Grass trimmings, sticks and branches, sugarcane plates, and Eco-Products’ disposables.

BPI (Biodegradable Products Institute):

A third party certifier of compostable products. Certifications by outside parties (such as BPI) help to verify the legitimacy of compostability claims. See www.bpiworld.org for more information.

Recycled:

Products made from materials that would otherwise have been waste (post-consumer or post-industrial), broken down (melted or pulped) into a basic substance from which a new product can be formed.

Recyclable:

Products that can be broken down (melted or pulped) into a basic substance from which a new product can be formed.

Compostable:

Compost is the result of the controlled decomposition of organic material that is sanitized through the generation of heat, and stabilized so that it is beneficial for plant growth. Compostable is similar to “biodegradable”, except that there are specific timelines required by third parties to be considered “compostable”. Most certifications require that the item is 90% degraded within 45 - 120 days. Examples: food waste, PLA corn plastics, and sugarcane products.

Zero waste:

The goal of diverting all waste from the a landfill by recycling or composting.

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