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‘Smear campaign’ over oxo-biodegradable plastic

Europe – While oxo-biodegradable plastic (OBP) ‘clearly’ reduces pollution and promotes sustainability, the material continues to be the target of a ‘concerted and underhanded smear campaign’ led by the bioplastics industry, according to OBP technology developer EPI Environmental Products.

Despite what it describes as the ′notable lack of credible scientific evidence′, industry parties are actively attempting to ′discredit′ OBP, says EPI. Recent ′alarmist claims′ by the Australasian Bioplastics Association (ABA) has resulted in the European Parliament becoming ′misled′ over OBPs, it adds.

ABA claims ′oxo-biodegradable additives contain heavy metals and are disruptive to human health and the environment′. And yet EPI insists that its additives are subject to the same stringent safety standards as compostable plastics and therefore ′contain neither heavy metals nor any environmentally toxic ingredients′. OBPs have been used in agricultural mulch film for many years with no evidence of toxicity or reduced soil fertility, EPI argues.

The inflammatory statement that ′OBPs fragment but do not biodegrade′ is also said to be false. The degradation products of OBPs are ′completely transformed into a form that is assimilated by naturally occurring micro-organisms′, EPI explains. Moreover, research has indicated that 91% biodegradation of the material can occur in a soil environment within 24 months.

Claims denouncing OBP technology are ′uniformly unfounded′ and devoid of scientific merit, concludes EPI′s president and ceo Joseph Gho. He calls for ′clear reason to prevail′ and urges legislators worldwide to ′remember the vested commercial interests of the bioplastics industry′.

For more information, visit: www.epi?

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