An image of the world with plastic wrapped round it to symbolise World Environment Day.

World Environment Day: The Importance of Biodegradable Wet Wipes

Making the fundamental transition to biodegradable wet wipes is just one of the significant ways we can support a more sustainable environment. It’s seemingly small changes like this that go a long way in ensuring a greener and better world for our future generations! With the ban on wet wipes containing plastic announced on earth day of this year, and consumers supporting this demand, it’s clear that the consensus across the board is to support the implementation of more eco-friendly solutions and push to protect our planet.

At Guardpack, we are committed to promoting conservation and sustainability through the manufacturing and use of our plastic free and biodegradable wipes. In light of World Environment Day, let’s take a closer look at the key points, how making the necessary switch can benefit you as a brand and how we can help.

What Are Biodegradable Wet Wipes?

Biodegradable wet wipes are disposable cloths designed to break down and decompose naturally, compared to traditional wet wipes, which often contain synthetic fibres that do not decompose easily. Biodegradable wipes are typically made from natural fibres like cotton, viscose, wood pulp, bamboo and importantly, are free from plastic.

Key Features and Benefits

  • Eco-Friendly Materials: Made from natural fibres that decompose more readily than synthetic materials. They’re often sourced from renewable resources, also reducing the depletion of non-renewable resources.

 

  • Source Materials: The source of raw material can also be an important selection criteria with FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) is an international, not-for-profit organisation and the certification means the source comes from sustainably managed forests and helps to protect old growth forests. Bamboo is frequently used as a source material due to it being the fastest growing plant.

  • Chemical Composition: Often formulated with natural and organic ingredients that are less harmful to the environment. There is also a much lower risk of pollution and harm to human health and wildlife compared to non-biodegradable wipes.

  • Decomposition Time: Designed to break down within months, depending on environmental conditions, unlike conventional wipes that can take decades. On this note, it’s important to dispose of biodegradable wipes properly. They should ideally be composted or disposed of in a way that allows them to degrade naturally and not flushed down toilets.

  • Certifications: Many biodegradable wipes come with certifications indicating they meet specific environmental standards. E.g., FSC sourced, ISO14001.

Protecting Our Ecosystems

Each year, millions of plastic wet wipes damage our ecosystems, where they can’t break down and lay festering for years on end. Because they are not biodegradable, the components are unable to break down. This leaves them clogging our sewages, rotting in nature and overflowing landfill. This contributes to the overarching problem of the damage to our natural environment.

Plastic pollution is considered to be the 5th biggest environmental problem of our lifetime according to earth.org. Once left rotting, wet wipes containing plastic can accumulate biological and chemical pollutants. This increases the risk of harm to the animals and humans who encounter them. The promotion and transition of biodegradable wet wipes is a necessary step in the reduction of plastic and microplastic pollution. This will also significantly reduce the volume of microplastics entering wastewater treatment sites when wrongly flushed. It’s safe to say that our planet can only benefit from making the easy and necessary switch to biodegradable wipes.

Correct Disposal

Although consumers are ready and willing to use biodegradable products, there is still confusion over how to dispose of biodegradable wet wipes. As mentioned above, no wipe is ever safe to flush down the toilet, echoed in the recent removal of ‘fine to flush’ accreditation in the UK. In fact, flushing any wet wipe, biodegradable or not, can cause a lot of damage to plumbing systems and the environment.

When a material is biodegradable, it can undergo decomposition. It breaks down into a few different elements with the help of microorganisms over time, which is dependent on the conditions. So, the correct and proper way to dispose of biodegradable wipes is actually by putting them in a waste bin.

Clear and accurate labelling on packaging here is crucial. It is fundamental to the CSR of any brand to ensure their products are clearly labelled with their ingredients and environmental impact. Clear instructions of proper disposal should also be highlighted.

Supplier Surge

The practicality of wet wipes can’t be disputed. From baby wipes, to single sachet restaurant wipes, hundreds of thousands are used daily in the UK alone. The switch to biodegradable will ensure that industry giants are committed to sustainability, working with suppliers and customers to reduce the use of plastic.

With many retailers now surging to transition over to biodegradable wet wipes, finding a reputable manufacturer, who is not only prepared for the incoming legislation but also ensures your compliance, continuity and longevity of any wet wipe product.

Biodegradable Wet Wipes and Recyclable Laminate at Guardpack

It’s probably no surprise by now to hear that Guardpack have always been advocates for providing greener and more sustainable alternatives to the marketplace. We offer our customers a wide range of biodegradable and recyclable options as standard and have done for many years.

The 100% viscose wet wipes we produce are made from plant based renewable fibres. These are fully compostable in as little as six months. The tissue is converted into pure water and carbon dioxide, which are part of photosynthesis, returning back to nature.

Additionally, the recyclable laminate used in the packaging of our liquid filled sachets and flowpacks is fully recyclable. Conducting our corporate and commercial activity in an ethical and sustainable way is incredibly important to us. We hope you will consider us as your biodegradable wet wipe manufacturer and join us in reducing the impact of climate change.

Get in Touch

At Guardpack, we’re passionate about achieving results that not only benefit your brand, but our precious planet. Interested in learning more about our biodegradable wet wipes and sustainable products? Get in touch with us today by filling out our contact form, emailing us at trade@guardpack.co.uk, or speak to one of the team today on 01245 505807. We look forward to hearing from you!

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