Nachhaltige Verpackung Hundefutter

We are recyclable! But what does that mean?

Ensuring sustainability was a mandatory promise when we founded BugBell. Of course, this shouldn’t just refer to the product, but to the entire business model. So we wanted to produce a dog food with all the trimmings that not only appeals to the dog, but also to the climate.

By using a sustainable protein alternative like our Hermetia illucens larvae instead of environmentally intensive traditional meat, we could produce high quality dog ​​food with a fraction of the environmental impact of our competitors. However, our commitment should not end with the selection of our products. We therefore spent a lot of time on the topic of packaging.

Pet food packaging, similar to food packaging, has several design challenges to overcome.

The packaging must be tear-resistant, durable, safe and temperature-stable in order to survive the often rough journey from production to the shelves. These requirements often replace the recyclability of the packaging. There are some types of common plastics that meet all challenges, but many of them cannot be recycled.

 

According to sustainability non-profit organization WRAP, the UK uses around 75,000 tonnes of primary dog ​​food packaging annually, containing over a million tonnes of wet and dry cat and dog food. It is believed that only one in 20,000 single-use food bags - including dog food bags - is recycled. That's a lot of waste ending up in landfills.

Although the recycling situation for dry food packaging is somewhat better, wet food bags present a particular challenge. The recycling rate for such bags is surprisingly low, 50 times lower than that of individual coffee cups.

How does BugBell implement the topic?

We ensure that all our packaging is environmentally friendly. That is our priority. The material varies from paper solutions to plastic solutions depending on the requirements regarding impermeability or tear resistance. In some cases, parts of the packaging have to be disposed of in different trash cans. But all of it is 100% recyclable. From the label to sealing to the outer box.

Our cups are made of kraft paper with a recyclable PLA organic coating. This means that the cups are made of biodegradable material and can be disposed of in organic waste bins or in paper waste in accordance with EN 13432. However, the PLA coating only lasts at temperatures up to 70°C. So we can't pasteurize them, which we don't need for our products like the terrine. Our seal also consists of a biodegradable PLA film. The label is also made of compostable paper and glue.

Our large containers are made of mono-PE material. They are not disposed of with organic waste or paper waste, but represent a very sustainable packaging solution as they are also 100% recyclable in the yellow bag. With this material we can ensure tear resistance for larger quantities and grease impermeability.

As if that weren't enough, we pay attention to environmental protection in every respect - from cardboard tape to sample goods to advertising products.

That all sounds great! But what does recyclable or biodegradable or compostable mean?

A key aim of product responsibility regulations is to give manufacturers incentives to take into account the environmental impact of products over their entire life cycle and, in particular, during later disposal, when designing and manufacturing products.

It is important to understand the differences in terms: Not everything that can be recycled is also compostable. Let's bring a little clarity to the jungle of terminology:

Biodegradable – breaking down a substance through biological activity

A substance is considered “biodegradable” if it can be broken down by biological activity – for example microorganisms or enzymes. The only waste products that should remain are water, carbon dioxide and biomass. Nevertheless, biodegradable packaging must under no circumstances be disposed of in the compost heap at home. In order to enable complete dismantling of the packaging, certain conditions must exist. For example, some compostable plastics only decompose completely at temperatures above 60 degrees Celsius - this is only the case in industrial composting plants.

“Compostable” packaging is not the same thing

While "biodegradable" is more of an umbrella term for the decomposition of materials through biological mechanisms, "compostable" plastic can actually be broken down into compost by microbes. In short: Although compostable packaging is biodegradable, biodegradable materials are not automatically compostable.

Our PLA layers are biodegradable

So there are two types of “compostable”.

Industrial composting plant:

Up to 90% decomposes within 12 weeks at approx. 60 °C. This means: After 12 weeks of composting, no more than 10% residue based on the original mass may remain in a 2 mm sieve.

Garden compost:

Decomposes at approx. 30 °C within 12 months.

  • 12 months in local compost
  • 12 weeks in the industrial composting plant

Discussion topic: plastic packaging

Plastic packaging is a much-discussed topic today. This has gained significant attention among consumers in the last two years. In addition to reducing materials, recycling also plays an important role. The EU plastics strategy sets the goal of making 100 percent of plastic packaging reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2030. Many companies, from producers to brand manufacturers, have committed themselves to achieving this goal together.

But can plastic packaging be recycled even if it consists of several layers or materials? No, this currently only works on purely mono-materials that can be added to the various recycling cycles. There are currently two known solutions for this:

1) Solution made from recyclable monomaterial based on PP

2) Recyclable mono-material solution based on PE

We hope we were able to give you some clarity on this packaging topic. Otherwise, please write to us at kontakt@bugbell.de .

Leave a comment

All comments are moderated before being published.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.