Student’s Corner

A major contributor to landfills is packaging which, alone, represents more than 60% of household trash. While packaging is necessary for certain products, they can be engineered to mitigate environmental impact (for instance, by choosing degradable paper over plastic). In the race to combat pollution, many companies have emerged with creative, ingenious plastic-free ideas for packaging. Here are a few of them:

SOAPBOTTLES I came across this product on Instagram and the idea is absolutely brilliant. A Berlin-based designer developed a bottle made out of soap that can serve as packaging for liquid hygiene products. The bottle has a water-insoluble layer on this inside that prevents the contained liquid to dissolve the soap [FastCompany]. Once you pour your shampoo in this bottle, you essentially have two products for simultaneous use. 

Banana Leaf Package Plastic bags are now officially banned in New York state however, plastic produce bags and packages are here to stay. If only there was an effective alternative…? Well, Thailand and Indonesia have the answer. Some Thai and Indonesian supermarkets use banana leaves as packaging rather than plastic [Forbes]. Not only this alternative is 100% biodegradable, it spares the planet of carbon emission from plastic production.

Edible Packaging Despite the increasing popularity of reusable containers, millions of single-use utensils are being used and thrown every day. The company Loliware engineered edible single-use products (e.g. cup, straw, etc.) from seaweed to replace their plastic and toxic counterparts. How cool is it to chew your cup after drinking a refreshing lemonade?

 

Written by Kelly Jean, Class of 2021

Photo Credit: Unsplash

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