European Parliament adopts its position on Green Claims Directive

Requires environmental claims to be verified by a third-party; addresses carbon offsetting schemes; disregards green claims on hazardous substances; vote will be followed up by new Parliament after elections in June

Stakeholder task force releases guidelines for compostable products legislation

US Composting Council, Biodegradable Products Institute, industry, and civil society organizations collaborate on publishing principles to guide policymakers; suggest requirement for third-party certification of compostability claims; present clear rules for labeling and product design

Degradation of compostable plastics can increase toxicity, scientists emphasize

Studies analyze biodegradable – including compostable – plastics for their in vitro toxicity and chemical composition; comparison with conventional plastics indicates higher toxicity of compostables which further increases with photodegradation and composting; detect brominated flame retardants in “biodegradable”-labeled food packaging

U.S. consumers confused about compostable and biodegradable food packaging labels

Half of surveyed people have difficulty with the difference between compostable and biodegradable; 50% of participants fail to dispose of packaging correctly; report suggests better standardization and consumer education needed

Biodegradable plastics may bring degradation and toxicity challenges, say scientists

In an opinion piece published in Waste Management scientists emphasize there is no universal biodegradability of plastics in any ecosystem; waste collection systems need adaptation and toxicity testing improvements; experimental study finds leachates of biodegradable plastic items affect mussel early embryo stages development and adult physiological parameters

Thailand introduces standard for fluoropolymer coated cooking utensils

Thai Industrial Standards Institute publishes updated standard for metal, fluoropolymer coated utensils in contact with hot foods; standard borrows from EU overall migration test methods for plastic materials and ISO standards; comes into force April 2, 2023; Thai ministries introduce tax incentive to reduce fossil-plastic use

Novelties of bioplastics: EC’s policy framework and industry updates

European Commission (EC) publishes policy framework on bio-based, biodegradable, and compostable plastics; aims to guide policy, industry, and public; “bioplastics” should not distract from circular economy principles prioritizing reduction, reuse, recycling; 17th annual European Bioplastics conference gives insights into recent bioplastics’ developments; bioplastics production capacities projected to almost triple by 2027

Value and struggles of the material production sector reducing emissions

Zero Waste Europe and Eunomia publish report on the ability of aluminum, concrete, steel, and plastics industries to meet global carbon budgets; current efforts and plans are unlikely to be sufficient to limit warming to 1.5°C; call for urgent actions to reduce material use

Scientists present and apply spectral database on plastic additives

Researchers develop high-resolution spectral database and method for the identification of 56 selected organic plastic additives; indicates presence of multiple additives when applied to polypropylene and polylactic acid food packaging; highlight chemical signature not polymer but product dependent and “bioplastic” just as conventional plastics contain harmful additives

Bioassays can help to develop safer food packaging

In vitro study assesses hormonal activity of leachates from bio-based polymers used in food packaging; demonstrates integration of toxicity testing in packaging development can help reduce toxicity and design safer bio-based packaging