What are the benefits of compostable, flexible packaging?

Compostable packaging has many benefits, including the fact that it can be treated like organic waste, and therefore, decompose naturally just like organic matter. When compostable packaging is discarded in the organic waste stream as compost, it will fully decompose within 6 months into a natural fertilizer for soil and plants.

What is the required amount of time for compostable packaging to completely break down?

International standards for compostable packaging include ASTM D6400, EN 13432 and ISO 17088, and require compostable materials to biodegrade within 180 days.

How long does it take for TIPA's products to break down?

All of TIPA’s film, laminate and packaging solutions naturally break down in any industrial compost facility in under 180 days.

Are there any hazardous consequences from the breakdown of fully compostable packaging?

International standards include eco-toxicity and heavy metal testing to assure that all certified compostable materials are nourishing and perfectly safe for the cultivation of soil.
See quote (From EN 134232) “The key requirements are: Quality of the final compost and eco-toxicity… this involves making an examination to see if the germination and biomass production of plants are not adversely affected by the influence of composted packaging.”

What is the difference between home and industrial composting?

Even though composting under industrial and/or home compost conditions yield identical results, industrial compost systems utilize more controlled conditions, including high heat, high humidity and the presence of bacteria/microorganisms – all in all, a more efficient process. Home composting typically varies from season to season, and is contingent upon the relative atmospheric conditions of the compost, depending on anything from the local climate to soil conditions, to what is added to the compost.

What does 'bio-based' mean?

According to the European Committee for Standardization (CEN), a bio-based product is one that is “wholly or partly derived from biomass, such as plants, trees or animals.” Using bio-based products helps decrease dependence on fossil sources.

Can I discard compostable packaging anywhere I please (i.e. ocean and nature)?

No.
At TIPA, we encourage the proper disposal of all kinds of waste, including organic and TIPA products.
The idea behind TIPA’s film and laminate solutions is that when organic waste is collected for composting, the composting process and ultimately the end result can act as a natural fertilizer for plants.

What conditions trigger the biodegradation process?

The right temperature, humidity and heat will trigger the biodegradation process.

Once the packages are produced, these conditions start to act very slowly, but only when they reach appropriate composting conditions, does the full degradation cycle begin to take place. Compostable packaging is designed to be treated in either industrial compost facilities or home in home compost bins. Some of TIPA’s films and laminates are suitable for home compost bins, but where lies the difference?

Industrial compost facilities maintain controlled conditions where the presence of high heat, high humidity and bacteria/microorganisms speed up the rate of biodegradation. In contrast, the degradation process of home compost bins act relative to the surrounding atmosphere, and are affected by conditions in which the compost is kept – this means that the rate of biodegradation can vary compared to a more controlled, industrial facility.

What is the difference between biodegradable and compostable packaging?

Biodegradation is a chemical process in which materials are metabolized into CO2, water and biomass, with the help of microorganisms. The process of biodegradation depends on the conditions of the specific environment and on the material or application itself, and therefore, the rate of decomposition varies significantly.

Composability is a characteristic of a product, packaging or associated component that allows it to biodegrade under appropriate conditions (e.g. a certain temperature, time frame, etc.). These specific conditions are described in ‘standards,’ such as the European standard for industrial composting EN 13432 (for packaging) or EN 14995 (for plastic materials in general). Materials and products complying with these standards can be certified and labelled accordingly.

What should I do with TIPA's packaging after use?

After using TIPA’s packaging, you should discard them in your organic waste stream via your home composting bin, if the package indicates it, or check your local organic waste stream methods.

What happens to TIPA’s packaging if it ends up in a landfill?

Disposal of TIPA’s packaging should be treated just like how you treat your organic waste.
Just like different types of organic scraps, TIPA’s packages will decompose in a pace according to the conditions it is in. In other uncontrolled environments, such as a landfill, it is difficult to estimate the exact time it will take for a package to fully decompose.

What happens to TIPA’s packaging if it ends up in the ocean?

No waste should ever end up in the ocean! Currently, there has yet to be a global standard around preventing waste from leaking into the natural ecosystem. At TIPA, we not only push to add packaging to the organic waste stream to fully decompose naturally without ending up in a landfill, but we also encourage better procedures, education and collection infrastructure on a global scale to make sure waste does not end up in the ocean.

Can TIPA’s packaging be recycled?

Compostable packaging cannot be recycled in traditional facilities. However, it can be naturally recycled in a home and/or industrial composter where it will turn into resource as water, carbon dioxide and organic matter.

What are TIPA’s certificates?

Our solutions are fully compostable abiding by international standards (EN 13432, ASTM D6400, ISO 17088). All of TIPA’s products are certified by TUV Austria for industrial composting, and several of our products are also certified by TUV Austria for home composting.

What is TIPA’s shelf life, and policy concerning shelf life?

Our compostable packaging is shelf stable, and will only begin to fully break down in compost environment (home or industrial) where natural, environmental elements including: high temperature, humidity and oxygen will activate the process of biodegradation. The natural presence of as mentioned elements, however, means that the mechanical and optical properties of our packaging will slowly weaken over a period of time. With that said, TIPA gives 6 months guarantee for any flaw in production (a common practice in the packaging industry).

What is TIPA’s packaging made of?

TIPA’s packaging is made from proprietary blends of different fully compostable polymers in order to achieve the supreme properties of our packaging solutions. TIPA offers certified, fully compostable features/add-ons to our packaging solutions including: zippers, valves and inks that are fully compostable.

Is TIPA’s packaging designed to be heated?

Our products are not designed to be heated in either a microwave, oven or on a stove.

Could I freeze TIPA’s packaging?

Yes, our packages can maintain its properties in freezing temperatures.

Is it possible to pack liquids in TIPA’s packaging?

Because humidity is a key catalyzing agent for commencing the biodegradation process, we must analyze whether it’s possible to pack it with TIPA’s packaging.

What are TIPA’s barrier properties?

We have a variety of laminate solutions with different properties and characteristics which are contingent on the product(s) and its needs.

Is there a weight limit to TIPA’s packaging content?

There isn’t a quantified weight limit for our film and laminate solutions. However, we work closely with our clients to guarantee our products fulfill their specifications needed.

What type of storage conditions does TIPA’s packaging need?

In general, all flexible packaging (compostable and non-compostable) require proper storage conditions which are usually below 30 ° C and a relative humidity of 50%.

In extreme weather conditions, TIPA’s products may initiate minor natural decomposition processes and therefore we don’t give warranties for more than six months. In extreme weather conditions, in order to
keep the product in good condition, we can recommend wrapping the packages in aluminum for isolation.

What is so special about TIPA’s packaging?

Compostable polymers have existed on the market for the past twenty years. Yet, the market uptake has been relatively stagnant due to the limited properties of these polymers. Existing products include mainly: shopping bags, waste bags and single-use service ware.

Food packaging requires robust properties to enable protection of food for extended shelf life, durability to withstand shipping conditions etc. Therefore, it has been a 5-year journey for TIPA to develop its high-end product to enhance the properties of its films significantly, as well as to improve its final packaging applications to withstand the rigorous requirements by the food packaging industry (where 75% of flexible packaging is consumed by the food industry).

What is the minimum order quantity for TIPA’s packaging?

The minimum order quantity for TIPA’s made-to-order products is 25,000 units per SKU.
For reels, it is 20,000 meters, or 1 ton of material.

What is the lead time from order to delivery?

The lead time is typically 8-12 weeks for production, and there is extra time needed for shipping which is contingent on the buyers’ location – keep in mind that our production is in various locations in Europe, and shipped from there.

Does TIPA provide the raw material?

TIPA do not provide raw material, such as resins and/or pellets. We may offer films that are cast or blown for converting machines.

Does TIPA need special converting machinery to produce its packaging?

TIPA’s products can be converted on conventional, converting machinery, the same machinery already used for conventional, flexible plastic packaging.

What type of sealing machine can TIPA use on its packaging?

TIPA’s products can be used on standard heat sealing machines, as well as low-temperature sealing machines.

What type of printing machine can be used on TIPA’s packaging?

Most of TIPA’s products can be printed on Flexo printing process. We also have the option to print on Gravure and digital, but we recommend if you have any questions, to contact us on your specific printing needs.

How much does TIPA’s packaging cost?

The pricing of our products is contingent on various parameters such as quantity, the product inside the package, the thickness of the material, printing options, shelf life needed and more.

Does TIPA sell packaging to the end consumer?

Currently, TIPA does not sell directly to the end consumer. TIPA’s film and laminate solutions are sold to brands, converters and distributors which will then be sold on the market for consumers.