Plastic plays a fundamental role in our lives in view of its multiple advantages in a diversity of applications. In the food industry, packaging enables fresh food to reach the consumer by extending the product’s shelf life while maintaining its full flavour and, more importantly, its nutritional components. Consequently, we can reduce food wastage. For instance, did you know that, thanks to plastic, only 3% of food in Europe is thrown away, whereas in other countries lacking this type of packaging and logistics, wastage rates can reach up to 40%?
In 2018, COEXPAN and EMSUR carried out a campaign on social media to promote the benefits of plastics and their importance in food packaging applications, with the aim of dispelling false myths and raising awareness about the responsible use and management of plastics.
PLASTICS PROTECT FOOD
Packaging products not only reduce food wastage and the energy used during production but also enable us to consume more safely and healthily. It should not be forgotten that the plastics industry complies with one of the most stringent set of laws in terms of food safety and is subjected to rigorous controls and regulations across most of the world.
Plastic is an incredibly efficient material. When used for packing and packaging, it occupies less space and is lighter to transport than other alternative materials. This results in lower energy consumption and therefore reduces greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere.
THE PRIORITY IS RECYCLING
Attempting to do without the benefits that plastics bring to our society is not an effective solution. The solution lies in building public awareness globally in regard to the importance of acting responsibly and demanding better waste collection, separation and treatment systems from the authorities. Plastic residuesare a valuable resource, especially to our industry, so they should never end up as waste in the environment.
It is important to extend the life of all products, fostering a circular economy
For example, when waste plastic is properly recycled, it can be transformed into a raw material or its calorific valuecan be harnessed in order to re-position it within the value chain.
Good waste management is the best means of ensuring plastic waste does not end up polluting the environment. All types of polymers are recyclable but the extent to which they are recycled depends on local collection systems and recycling infrastructure, which vary greatly from one country to another. That is why it is important to promote framework regulations that implement new recycling streams while significantly overhauling the current systems for collecting and recycling used plastic.
COMMITTED TO A MORE SUSTAINABLE ECONOMY
COEXPAN and EMSUR collaborate with several associations around the world in support of local projects that promote such initiatives. Although our products are intended to cover functional and economic needs, we have the permanent conviction that natural resources are what make our business work. For that reason, both companies are committed to creating a new generation of packaging with innovative solutions and sustainable designs that guarantee food preservation while facilitating recycling after use.