May 5 - Consumers Right to be Skeptics about Biodegradable Claims


CAW has already launched a Campaign in an effort to enforce the ban of the word "biodegradable" on plastic products, but now compostable products, particularly utensils, are coming at odds with consumer expectations as well.

In an interview with CBS 5, CAW’s Director of Legal and Regulatory Affairs, Scott Smithline, explained the discrepancies between manufacturer’s standards and composting facilities' standards which ultimately result in compostable utensils being sent to landfills.

"Forks need a certain thickness for function, but that same thickness acts as a barrier to microbial degradation."

CBS 5’s article points out that products are labeled certified compostable if they are shown to break down within 180 days, but many compostable facilities have cycles of only 60-90 days. Considering the term certified "compostable" always refers to compostable within commercial facilities, the only end of life option that remains is landfilling.

Visit our blog to keep up to date about greenwashing instances in your consumer products and If you want to familiarize yourself with the laws that regulate your plastic product’s environmental standards, visit our Campaign’s page.

Currently we are also supporting SB 567, a bill that expands the scope of our previous bill, AB 1972, and ensures that plastic products are labeled appropriately to avoid undelivered expectations about their environmental impact.