Compostables & Bioplastics
At the current time Rethinking Plastic recommends paper based products, as opposed to bioplastics and compostables.
Bioplastics are often made from corn and other vegetable cellulose, and although they feel like a regular plastic cup, are only made to be composted in a commercial composting facility. Unfortunately, we do not have any commercial composting facilities in the area, so all of these go in the trash, and end up in the landfill.
This is just one example of ‘greenwashing’ meaning selling something as ‘green’ and in reality – because of the lack of infrastructure or other reasons - not being so. Unfortunately some restaurants are paying a premium for items that actually should go to the landfill - and even worse, contaminate the recycling stream.
Since 2015 Ithaca College has not accepted disposable forks, spoons and knives that are labeled as “compostable” into the compost collection bins, and all utensils must now be thrown into the trash.