People in the food industry know exactly how much plastic trash (single use plastic) is accumulated every day. The amount of tableware made from plastic that is thrown away at the end of the day could potentially overwhelm anyone. Nowadays, it is dire for companies to switch over to compostable or biodegradable tableware in order to be more eco-friendly and sustainable.
Consumers are much smarter in this day and age and will follow brands that promote more green products in their packaging, tableware or general usage. It is not just trendy to reduce plastic pollutants, it has also become a culture in some communities to do so.
Today, we’ll be introducing the top 20 brands, big or small, that have switched over to using compostable tableware in their businesses.
What is compostable tableware?
Disposable plates and tableware can be very handy in times of large parties as opposed to ceramic plates. It may be impractical at times to use ceramic plates during picnics or barbeques. However, while disposable plates definitely have its use, they are not entirely environmentally friendly as many types are made from plastics or non-recyclable materials.
As a compromise for people who need to use disposable plates and still want to go the green way, compostable products and tableware steps in. These are tableware (plates, cups, cutlery, straws, etc) that are made from materials that can degrade quickly and are suitable for composting.
Technology nowadays has come up with various degradable and compostable materials in order to manufacture tableware. Bamboo, corn and hay are examples of these materials.
Instead of throwing this tableware into the bin at the end of the day, users can simply place the plates into a compost bin after use. They will gradually break down and become compost. It is, however, important to ensure that there are no items left on the plates that are unsuitable for composting such as meat, cooked food or metal serviceware.
Top 20 global brands that are using compostable tableware
Multiple brands, particularly in the food and beverage industry, have switched over to compostable tableware and packaging in order to do their part to promote more sustainable living.
Here’s our top 20 list, all of which have switched over to compostable or recyclable packaging,
1. BOSS Foods
BOSS Food’s vegan superfood bars use compostable wrappers made by TIPA.
Products by TIPA is certified for industrial and home composting. Do not worry about the food wrapped by TIPA as they always ensure that it works the same way as conventional packaging.
2. Buddy Fruits
Fruits need to be packaged as airtight as possible. To do that, Buddy Fruits partnered with TerraCycle who collects and recycles hard to recycle products and makes them into new materials and products.
As a customer of Buddy Fruit, you can request for an envelope from TerraCycle in order to ship them empty pouches.
Although arguably serving not exactly healthy food, McDonald’s is definitely healthy towards the environment.
McDonald’s aims to have 100% of its packaging sourced from renewable, recycled or certified sources by 2025. As a shorter-term goal, by 2020, they aim to source 100% of primary fibre-based guest packaging from recycled or certified sources where no deforestation occurs.
McDonald’s is also a Principal Member of ReSource: Plastic which is the World Wildlife Fund’s platform to leverage the power of business to stop the flow of plastic waste into nature. They also have collaborations with Quantis on the Plastic Leak Project. This allows for McDonald’s to measure their plastic waste impact and to develop solutions.
This world-famous coffee chain has been decreasing waste, increasing recycling and promoting reusability. Starbucks’ goal is to double the recyclability, compostability and reusability of their cups and packaging by 2022.
In 2018, this company partnered with Closed Loop partners and launched a global effort to identify recyclable and compostable cup solutions with the NextGen Consortium and Challenge.
Starbucks is also committed to phasing out plastic straws by 2020, which will result in eliminating more than one billion straws a year.
This is another reason to smile! This oral-care rand has launched a vegan-certified toothpaste tube that is recyclable.
Most toothpaste tubes are made from plastic and aluminium, which is impossible to break down. However, Colgate claims that you can throw their toothpaste tube into the recycling bin.
Named as the Smile for Good toothpaste tube, it is made from high-density polyethene (HDPE).
This famous food brand is a big advocate for recycling. In 2017, Waitrose recycled over 780 tonnes of plastic.
Currently, 80 percent of their overall packaging is recyclable. They highly encourage customers to recycle and Waitrose shops offer recycling facilities for customers wherever possible.
Waitrose worked together with WRAP, the British Retail Consortium to develop a standard on-pack recycling labelling scheme packaging. This allows for easy understanding for consumers as they see the Recycle Now logo which means that the packaging is recyclable.
7. Don Maslow Coffee
There are several companies selling coffee in bags that claim to be compostable but are not actually certified for it.
Usually, coffee bags use non-compostable plastic parts to keep them airtight. Of course, bags which are compostable without these parts are also available. It is just that the coffee is not as fresh.
However, Elevate Packaging and PURE Labels have provided Don Maslow Coffee with 100% compostable packaging and labels. The coffee bags are made with certified and compostable films which have a high barrier layer for oxygen and moisture. It is also strong and durable so there is no compromise on the quality of packaging.
Every component, including the zipper and valve, are tested and certified compostable according to ASTM D6868 and EN13432 standards.
8. Honest Tea
This popular tea brand has Cradle to Cradle certification on their glass bottles which means that it received high marks in several sustainable indicators.
Honest Tea has also rolled out new Tetra Pack packaging for their kids’ juices that is recyclable. They also joined GreenBlue’s Sustainable Packaging Coalition, which shows their commitment to reducing its environmental footprint.
Their Great Recycle campaign features a series of events featuring oversized recycling bins.
9. Loving Earth
Loving Earth is a chocolate brand. In 2014, they took steps to ensure the eco-friendliness and freshness of their raw organic cereals and superfood bars by adopting high-performance compostable packaging.
Packaging by Econic, the compostable packaging improved the sustainability as well as boosted the shelf life of the bars.
The wrappers are made by Convew from three compostable films. The three films are derived from FSC certified wood pulp and non-gmo corn.
Their chocolate boxes are also made of 100% recycled wood fibres.
10. No Evil Foods
No Evil Foods’ vegetarian meat alternatives come in compostable packaging. Previously, they used butcher paper with a non-biodegradable sticker, which made it difficult to compost.
Now, their compostable packaging is made by Kraftpak. Kraftpak is a biodegradable and unbleached carton board and is certified for recycling.
11. Strauss Family Creamery
For decades, Strauss Family Creamery has packaged its organic milk in reusable glass bottles. Although technically not compostable, they should be lauded as eco-friendly as customers can rinse the bottles and return them to the store where they purchased to get a deposit.
This company will then take the bottles back to their facilities to reuse the bottles an average of five times before sending them to be recycled.
Each year, the company keeps about 500,000 pounds of milk containers and plastic out of landfills as they have an 80% return rate on bottles.
Nestle has a vision for achieving a waste-free future. By 2025, they aim to have 100% of their packaging be recyclable or reusable.
In an effort to reduce single-use plastics, they have introduced reusable packaging and in early 2020, announced an investment of CHF 2 billion to accelerate the development of innovative packaging solutions.
In September 2019, Nestle inaugurated the Nestle Institute of Packaging Sciences. This institute evaluates and develops various sustainable packaging materials including biodegradable and compostable materials.
13. Alter Eco
Alter Eco is another chocolate company. They spent three years developing truffle wrappers that are fully compostable and non-toxic.
This truffle wrappers can be composted in industrial facilities but will also biodegrade in normal streams.
They have also created fully compostable stand-up pouches for its quinoa products.
14. Roberts Bakery
Roberts Bakery is based in the United Kingdom. They use 100% recyclable packaging for its Bloomer range.
The wrapping is made out of recyclable paper with a clear, recyclable film. With this switch, Roberts Bakery cut its plastic usage by 53%.
They aim to fully use paper wrappers in the future and to extend their plan to all their other products, which will make it more sustainable.
15. BOXED Water
Although we are all trying to cut down on single-use plastic bottles, once in a while, it is unavoidable and the convenience of these bottles win out. This is where BOXED water comes in.
Like the brand says, it is water packaged into a box. Three-quarters of the box is made out of paper but the whole box is recyclable.
16. Costa Coffee
Costa Coffee has over 3,000 stores around the world. This means they go through a whole lot of disposable cups.
However, the company has decided to take its recycling and sustainable responsibilities seriously by making new commitments. These commitments including discounts on reusable cups and removal of all plastic straws from cafes.
By 2020, Costa Coffee aims to recycle half a billion cups! This translates into recycling as many takeaway cups as they sell.
Evian is very famous for its bottled water. However, they plan on going carbon neutral and plastic-free.
This world-famous brand of bottled water is on the frontline in the battle to reduce plastic waste and by 2025, they have pledged to only produce bottles which are 100% recycled.
In order to do that, they have partnered with the Ellen MaCarthur Foundation to create a “circular model” and with Veolia to rapidly scale-up recycling rates.
18. Domino’s Pizza
Contrary to popular belief, pizza boxes are recyclable, even if they have grease on them. Domino’s Pizza aims to educate customers on this fact.
Their primary box supplier, WestRock, launched this site to share facts about pizza box recycling.
Domino’s Pizza’s pizza box is unique as they feature trimmed corners, thus reducing cardboard usage that is made from ethically sourced materials. Although reducing the amount of material used by only a little bit, it actually results in a huge decrease in carbon footprint because millions of boxes are used every day.
This iconic bakery is also loved for its ecoware and biodegradable cups.
Cinnabon has collaborated with multiple other brands including Breyers and KFC. Ecoware, the first and largest sustainable packaging company in India since 2010 is Cinnabon’s supplier for compostable and sustainable packaging.
This global sandwich company has introduced multiple initiatives in order to reduce their carbon footprint including doing away with unnecessary packaging wherever possible.
They also introduced salad bowls and lids that are made from 95% post-consumer recycled materials.
Subway has also partnered with conservation organization Nature Conservancy to provide reusable Fresh Fit For Kids meal bags with conservancy themes.
You can enjoy the above brands that use sustainable packaging and also reduce your daily carbon footprint on the way. If you are in the food and beverage industry, or any industry that uses packaging, you can try Green Compostable to supply all the necessary tableware that is sourced from natural materials like bamboo and is completely compostable.