The term "biodegradable" has been used over the past few years, to describe plastics or packaging that could potentially be metabolized by microorganisms in nature, with complete breakdown to CO2/Methane, water and biomass. However, there is significant confusion and controversy surrounding biodegradable plastics since many suppliers have used the term to loosely describe their material/packaging without specifying the conditions under which the material would degrade in nature. For instance, some plastics (like PLA) will only degrade under industrial composting conditions, while some others (like PHA) can break down under a wider range of conditions and environments (industrial, backyard, marine). Given this widespread confusion and the misuse of the "biodegradable" term, many global government and industry organizations have issued guidelines to restrict or eliminate the unqualified use of biodegradable as a descriptor of plastics or packaging. These include the European Commission guidelines (European Plastics Strategy) and the Federal Trade Commission Green Guides in the US.
In line with such guidelines, Ubuntoo's recommends that companies providing biodegradable materials, products or packaging:
1.Avoid unqualified use of the term "biodegradable" to describe their products
2.Any claim of biodegradability should be accompanied by a description of specific conditions and environments under which the material or product will undergo degradation in nature
3.It is strongly recommended that companies provide globally accepted certifications or testing for various biodegradability claims (such as the BPA certification for industrial composting)
Further in line with the position articulated by the European Commission as well as major CPG companies, Ubuntoo recommends that "biodegradable" plastics should not be considered a solution for littering (or worse a license to litter). Appropriate collection and end-of-life solutions (such as industrial composting or home composting) need to be put into place to avoid biodegradable plastics ending up as litter in the environment.
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Rekoop is based on the premise of using recycling as a tool to make the world a happier and healthier place. Rekoop bedding is made by recycling PET bottles into an eco-friendly polyester fibre, manufactured by Reliance Industries Limited.
This fibre is blended with cotton, spun into a Chief Value Cotton yarn, woven and then processed into an ultra soft fabric. The bedding made from this fabric is truly sustainable and free of any hazardous chemicals.
Rekoop’s two key features are:
Sustainability - Recycling polyester lowers the demand for petroleum extraction, reduces the emission of greenhouse gases and decreases the overall carbon footprint. It also aids in landfill reduction and conservation of water, energy and the environment.
Traceability - The program from Applied DNA Sciences (ADNAS) tags, tests and tracks the originally recycled PET fibre from the place of origin to the point of sale. The signature tagging is applied to the PET pellets at the beginning of the production cycle. It gives the customers power to verify and track each and every pellet that goes into the production of their bedsheets and make sure that it is safe and authentic.
The manufacturing process is as follows:
Collection of PET bottles,
Cleaning and sorting of the bottles,
Grinding and shredding the bottles into flakes,
Applied DNA’s SignatureT molecular tag is applied to masterbatch pellets. CertainT verifies all tagged pallets,
The masterbatch is mixed in a pre-decided ratio with the PET flakes, which are then processed through an extruder and transformed into tagged r-PET fibre,
The fibres are spun along with cotton to make cotton / polyester blended yarn,
Fabric is woven, processed, cut and sewn into finished bedding products,