Why don't we use compostable packaging?
We’re working really hard on better packaging, but don’t believe the current compostable packaging is the answer for us –
We do, however, applaud any and all steps our industry is taking to move toward a better solution. Our current packaging is recyclable at large supermarkets, but we also have some exciting work happening in the background and hope to have positive news soon.
Still interested? Here’s a bit more on why we’re doing it this way…
There are a few issues with current compostable packaging (although we will readily admit that no solution is absolutely perfect):
- Very few households have compost bins– just 3% in 2014, although I think we can generously assume this has increased somewhat since. If the packs aren’t going in these bins, they’re going to landfill because they can’t be recycled.
- Compostable is not the same as biodegradable (where it would break down no matter the condition). Most compostable packaging needs to go to a very specific type of industrial composting facility, of which there are very few in the UK. Some are compostable at home, though nurturing the right conditions is tough.
- Snacks are often consumed on the go – while local facilities often have a general waste and a recycling bin, there isn’t a composting bin.
- Compostable packaging adds very little – if any – value to soil and can take months to degrade. Given just a pack of crisps every week, you might find yourself a very unbalanced compost bin with undigested items dispersed in the soil when the compost does get used – not what you want local wildlife to munch on..
- Shelf life is typically reduced – the product won’t last as long.
While any advance in compostable technology is superb, we aren’t sure it’s there… yet. We’re aiming for something that is ideally compostable/biodegradable but, more importantly, widely recyclable. We would like the packaging to have a second life after hosting our delicious crisps!
Is our packaging recyclable?
Yes! Crisp packets are all recyclable, but until recently, there’s been a lack of facilities to make that possible. However, right now you will have to take them with you to a larger supermarket and use the bins they have there, along with many other soft plastics not currently recyclable at home.
Of course, we’re also working on finding a way for you to be able to recycle at home.
What are we doing about our carbon footprint?
We’re on a path to get to carbon neutral, and then on to net zero. Because we’re an independent business that grows our own crop and makes our own product, we have a huge amount of control of our supply chain. Here are a few of the ways we’re making a difference to our emissions:
- – Our packaging is carbon neutral
- – We use farming methods which capture carbon, taking it from the air to the ground, such as green cover crops over winter and dedicated areas of greenery for wild birds
- – When we do disturb the soil, we use methods that reduce the release of carbon (for example light tilling versus deep ploughing)
- – We use biodiesel in our tractors – and the oil we use to cook our potatoes is converted to biodiesel!
- – We have annual tree and hedge planting programmes
- – We’re building reservoirs and laying underground pipes to reduce the energy needed to pump water around the farm
- – We use renewable energy on site
More importantly, we are taking the time to measure the impact of everything we do, so we can identify ways to do even more