Reduction and removal of plastics from packaging is now more critical than ever as we see images of the pollution that is threatening to choke our oceans. At the same time, recycling of packaging needs to be made easier and less costly.
Great progress is being made in the fields of bio-compostable plastics which under the required processing conditions will rapidly disintegrate to water, carbon dioxide and a few harmless minerals that naturally occur in soil. These are plant-based, made from sustainable, organic sources rather than non-renewable, non-biodegradable petrochemicals.
But a significant volume of plastics used in packaging comes from carton sealing tapes which, even when removed from cartons before the recycling process leaves behind adhesive residue that compromises the strength of the recycled cardboard and causes damage to screening and filtering sections of the recycling plant. If plastic tape is not removed from cartons when they are disposed of – and how often is this done, to be honest? – another cost is added to the recycling process. The tape itself is not recyclable and goes straight to landfill.
A simple and cost-effective solution is water activated tape – kraft paper tape made from fully sustainable, managed softwood and a natural starch adhesive. It is entirely biodegradable and can be left on cartons sent for recycling, as the kraft paper is compatible with the cardboard for creating new, recycled materials and the adhesive simply dissolves in the water used in the process, leaving behind no residue that will damage equipment or threaten the environment.
This is one of seven advantages of water-activated tape that we are highlighting in a series of blogs, which alone and in combination present a strong argument for changing from pressure-sensitive to water activated tape. Be sure to look out for them all and revisit previously-published blogs at southgate.eu.com/blogs.
Tegrabond® water activated tapes and dispensers are supplied by Southgate through their network of approved suppliers throughout the UK and across Europe.