Our packaging is comprised of corn plastic trays and boxes and eucalyptus cellophane. At the moment, our stickers aren't eco-friendly and are printed with conventional methods, but we hope to move in that direction when we have the capacity to.
it's going in the garbage anyways...who cares?
The short answer is we do. Without a proper waste system in Belize, we feel it is our responsibility to ensure our packaging doesn't end up in our reef, or if it does end up littering the side of the road, that it will biodegrade into the soil.
We already have an ocean full of garbage, why add more to the Carribbean sea?
Why are you using corn plastic over other alternatives (sugar cane plastic, etc.)?
We believe in making choices that we feel good about. Right now, the cellophane slips you see on our produce is made from eucalyptus plants, and the trays and boxes are made from corn. We chose to use plant-based plastics over petrol-based plastic because of the obvious environmental implications (Did you know regular plastic bags take 1000-2000+ years to decompose? Let's not even mention styrofoam, and the unpickable muck it leaves in our Barrier Reef!), but also because we didn't want our vegetables to have that awful plastic taste (+ applicable health effects) that often leaches in. We didn't choose to use sugar-based plastics because they don't hold up well in the Belizean heat. We wanted an option that was water resistant, heat hardy and great for storing in refrigeration if needed.
HOW SHOULD I RECYCLE MY CORN PLASTIC PACKAGING?
As you know, we have transitioned to 100% compostable packaging made from corn plastic. Belize is not yet equipped with industrial composting units and because it is a different material than regular petrol-based plastic, it cannot yet be recycled in standard facilities. Knowing this, you can throw out your eucalyptus plastic wrapper and corn plastic tray in the bin, or in your compost. It will take longer than 90 days to decompose because it isn't in an industrial composter, but it is still much faster than the 1000-2000+ years it takes regular plastic to degrade. Pick off the stickers before throwing the eucalyptus plastic slip/corn tray/corn box into your compost (the ink on the labels is not 100% natural, something we would love to transition to when we have the capacity to). You can also reuse your corn plastic box to hold that pesto sauce you made with our basil, right? You will notice after several uses, however, that the edges of the box will begin to degrade because of its exposure to water (Yes, it really does compost!).
Right now, the packaging we have chosen is the healthiest and most environmentally sound option we could find, but we are always looking to improve ourselves and are open to any suggestions you have! Send us your ideas!