Plastics Help Keep Food Fresher While Reducing Packaging Waste
Washington, D.C. (August 1, 2014)—Summer is peak season for road trips, which usually include plenty of snacks and beverages. But nobody wants to end the trip with spoiled food and heaps of waste. To help protect your food and the environment, Plastics Make It Possible® offers tips on how plastics can help reduce both food waste and packaging waste during long road trips.
“Summer road trips don’t have to include soggy sandwiches and excessive waste,” said Steve Russell, vice president of plastics for the American Chemistry Council, which sponsors the Plastics Make It Possible® initiative. “Lightweight plastics can help prevent a lot of food waste and reduce packaging waste, so you can bring along fresh and healthful foods while leaving a lighter environmental footprint.”
Here are some tips on how road trippers can reduce food and packaging waste:
- Lightweight Pouches: A wide variety of foods today are packaged in flexible, lightweight plastic pouches that protect food with very little material, so it’s easy to toss them in a purse, picnic basket, or backpack. Look for snack foods such as nuts, trail mix, and dried fruits in re-sealable pouches that let you eat only the amount of food you need and then seal and store the rest for later, which helps reduce food waste.
- Airtight Storage:Exposing food to excess oxygen can lead to spoilage on the road. Packing fruits, vegetables, sandwiches, and snacks in airtight plastic zipper bags can help reduce food waste. Simply squeeze the extra air out of the bags before zipping them closed to help keep food fresher longer. For prepared foods, airtight plastic containers are lightweight and easy to carry around—without the worry of shattering.
- Lighter Loads:Plastic bottles, containers, bags, cups, plates typically are lighter and use less material than available alternatives, so they can help reduce packaging waste. Coolers made with insulating plastic foam also are lightweight and help keep snacks cool and fresh during long drives. Some are even made with recycled plastics.
- Road Trip Recycling: To reduce packaging waste even further, encourage recycling on the road by keeping two plastic bags in the car—one to collect trash and the other for recyclables. Everyday plastic packaging such as beverage bottles, juice jugs, butter tubs, condiment containers, and more can be recycled in communities across the country. And remember to save those plastic grocery bags, plus the bags and wraps from bread, buns, bottled water cases, napkins, and other products—they are collected at participating grocery stores. When recycled, these everyday plastics can live on as new products and keep valuable materials out of landfills. Visit IWantToBeRecycled.org to find out what’s collected for recycling where you live or where you are traveling.
For more information on using plastics to reduce waste, visit plasticsmakeitpossible.com.
About Plastics Make it Possible®
Plastics Make it Possible® highlights the many ways plastics inspire innovations that improve our lives, solve big problems, and help us design a safer, more promising future. This initiative is sponsored by America’s Plastics MakersTM of the American Chemistry Council. For more information, visit www.plasticsmakeitpossible.com, check out our Facebook page and follow us @plasticpossible on twitter at www.twitter.com/plasticpossible.
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The American Chemistry Council (ACC) represents the leading companies engaged in the business of chemistry. ACC members apply the science of chemistry to make innovative products and services that make people’s lives better, healthier and safer. ACC is committed to improved environmental, health and safety performance through Responsible Care®, common sense advocacy designed to address major public policy issues, and health and environmental research and product testing. The business of chemistry is a $812 billion enterprise and a key element of the nation’s economy. It is one of the nation’s largest exporters, accounting for twelve percent of all U.S. exports. Chemistry companies are among the largest investors in research and development. Safety and security have always been primary concerns of ACC members, and they have intensified their efforts, working closely with government agencies to improve security and to defend against any threat to the nation’s critical infrastructure.