Today we are in a society of high consumerism, which generates growth in the demand for all kinds of products, including food.
When a society consumes a lot of a product, it is necessary for producers to increase their manufacturing capacity, in the specific case of packaged food, a high existence also means a large number of packaging discarded after consumption.
Three alternatives have been proposed to minimize the environmental impact generated by food packaging waste: recycle, reuse and reduce. Reducing food production is complex because the increase in population demands greater consumption and, in turn, greater manufacturing. In addition, some packages need to be opened and damaged to access the food, making its reuse impossible.
The packaging commonly used in this industry as bags or containers are made of a mixture of sheets of different types of plastic, which together offer the barrier that the food needs. However, the fact of mixing these sheets results in the extension of the shelf-life of the packaging, causing its biodegradation to take a considerably long period of time, making proper recycling impossible – since a material can only be recycled when one material is not combined with others.
New developments offer the opportunity to reduce the environmental impact generated by food packaging. Nowadays, we have access to bags made of a single material, that is a single plastic sheet with a barrier high enough to ensure that the product will not be affected by external environmental conditions.
These new single-material bags (which are still plastic) are fully recyclable, and are the best option to offer a product that remains harmless over time and minimize pollution to the environment.