The Co-operative Food Group last weekend announced that it is developing a fully biodegradable paper teabag that does not contain plastic. The major retailer is to make its own-brand Fairtrade 99 teabags free of polypropylene, currently used as a sealant industry wide to maintain a teabag’s shape.
The biodegradable bag will be tested next month and the retailer hopes to introduce the product, which will be fully compostable in food waste collections, later this year.
Responding to the announcement, BBIA Managing Director David Newman said: ‘This news is an important recognition of the role compostable materials can play in reducing food waste and enhancing recycling.
‘By being industrially compostable, the new teabags will help show retailers, consumers and food service packaging producers that compostables are available and can solve recycling issues in a growing number of food products.
‘The increasing uptake of these materials makes the need for food waste collections across England to be made obligatory quickly to ensure the collection and pathway to organic recycling of these products as compost, a natural soil fertiliser.
‘We look forward to other food packaging using compostable packaging and following the leadership the Co-operative Food Group has shown, not for the first time.’
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