M&H claims that the material allows it to offer plastic components that degrade within 5-10 years, compared to the hundreds of years it would take standard polymers to degrade.
An oxo-biodegradable additive breaks down the polymer chains in the plastic to make them brittle, which allows it to break down in a similar way to other compostable materials, according to the company.
“Biodegradable products are a new addition to the portfolio of products M&H can offer to meet the increased demand for sustainable products,” said Simon Chidgey, sales and marketing director at M&H Plastics.
The biodegradable product can be incorporated into M&H’s blow moulded HDPE bottles, PP bottles, Polyethylene tubes, jars and caps.
The company’s marketing manager Vicki John said it has the appearance of a normal plastic product and has the same properties until placed in the waste stream, when UV light starts the degradation process.
“Once in the landfill the UV light kick starts the process and the heat in the soil continues the composting,” she explained.
However, the new biodegradable option commands a higher price, with M&H estimating a premium of between 15 and 20 per cent, although the company said this very much depends on the material used, the size of the product and the quantity.
Reducing carbon footprint
The use of the biodegradable material in Philip Kingsley’s range of Scalp Toners forms part of the company’s efforts to reduce its environmental footprint, which was developed "as part of its UK focused procurement strategy aimed at reducing their carbon footprint,” according to Chidgey.
The company opted for M&H’s 75ml and 250ml Tall Boston Round bottles from the packaging supplier’s standard range.