Technology & Science·Marketplace

The label says 100% compostable plastic. But it's likely ending up in a landfill

You see them in a variety of products on grocery store shelves: bags, cutlery and coffee pods made of what's known as compostable plastic. But watch what Marketplace discovered about what actually happens when you put them in your green bin.

Here is what actually happens when you put compostable plastics in your green bin

As the plastic pollution problem deepens, interest has grown for alternatives to conventional plastics like bioplastics packaging. (CBC)

Over the last year, Marketplace has investigated the overuse of plastic packaging at some of Canada's top supermarket chains. A year later, we revisited Loblaws, Sobeys, Costco and Walmart and found evidence of a growing industry — bioplastics.

One of the bioplastics we came across in our supermarket search: compostable plastics. The team found bags, cutlery and coffee pods made of compostable plastic on many store shelves.

As the plastic pollution problem deepens, interest has grown for alternatives to conventional plastics like bioplastics packaging, an industry that is expected to grow to $10 billion over the next few years. 

But watch what Marketplace discovered about compostable plastics and what actually happens when you put them in your green bin.

We get to the bottom of those “compostable” claims on plastic packaging. Should you put them in the green bin or will they end up in landfill anyway? 4:38

 

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