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When it comes to cutlery, we know that stainless steel or sterling silver is always best. Unfortunately, silverware are not the most affordable or convenient cutlery for all occasions, and many times we have to find alternatives for them.
Since their invention, single use plastic cutlery have proven to be a most suitable alternative-- that is, before the devastating environmental effects of using them quickly caught up to us. Now we know that utensils and other items made from traditional plastic have plenty of disadvantages, and we are left wanting yet another, better alternative.
Thankfully many have come up with solutions to this problem. Such solutions include wooden cutlery and biodegradable cutlery. Both seem like really good alternatives, but what are they really? And are they truly better for us and for the planet? Here we try to answer these questions.
First, let us take a look at biodegradable cutlery. These are cutlery made of plant-based bioplastics, with plants instead of petroleum used as raw material. From this fact alone we can infer that biodegradable cutlery is much better for the earth than their traditional plastic counterparts, since their raw material is renewable and sustainable.
Bioplastics can be made from a number of different plant-based products, such as starches, corn oil and even fruit peels and seeds. Since they don’t contain chemical fillers, they are unlikely to leach harmful chemicals into our food or our environment. They’re also reported to produce a much smaller carbon footprint from manufacturing and disposal than traditional plastics. Lesser energy and fossil fuels are needed to produce them; fewer contaminants are released during their end-of-life; and overall waste and plastic pollution are minimised-- making them very good alternatives indeed.
However, bioplastics are not a perfect solution. While they may be biodegradable, they need specific conditions in order to decompose effectively. If they are thrown out into landfills they will still become like their non-biodegradable counterparts. They need to be composted in industrial composting facilities in order to truly decompose. So if you are to use cutlery made of bioplastic, you need to be diligent in disposing them properly.
Bioplastics are also more costly to produce than traditional ones. But as demand continues, technology improves and source materials become easier to procure, there’s a chance that bioplastic products like biodegradable cutlery will become more affordable in the future.
Wooden cutlery, as you may have already figured out, are cutlery made out of wood. This can be bamboo, birch or maple. Because they are made of wood, you can be sure that they will decompose rather easily, and could even be recycled.
Wooden cutlery are natural, lightweight, safe, and made from abundant, renewable and recyclable resources. This makes them very good for the planet, however they also have their disadvantages. Because they are made of wood, they are porous and absorbent. Once they come into contact with food, they can easily soak up moisture and bacteria, which is why they should not be used for the long term.
Wooden cutlery can also be prone to developing cracks or splinters if not handled properly during the manufacturing process. Some that are made of certain types of wood such as cedar or cypress could also contaminate food with oily resins and strong odours. Others made from imported or recycled wood may also be exposed to chemicals. For these reasons, it’s important that you choose a trusted manufacturer of disposable wooden cutlery in Australia.
Like biodegradable cutlery, wooden cutlery can cost a bit more than traditional plastic cutlery, especially if they are made from imported wood. Unlike biodegradable cutlery however, they have a unique charm about them that adds to their appeal and value. They can make food displays look extra special, and impress clients and guests with their variety of styles and designs.
And thanks to suppliers like Alpha Food Packaging, you can purchase disposable wooden cutlery wholesale at a more affordable price. So the next time you’re in need of disposable cutlery, consider getting these more eco-friendly alternatives and get them at the best prices at Alpha Food Packaging!