Is silicone an eco-friendly choice?

The use of plastics and how they affect the environment is a very topical subject at the moment, with a push to reduce use of plastics and encourage the development of alternative products that offer a much eco-friendlier impact. There are many options available, some old and some new innovative concepts.

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Reducing plastic in the ocean

It has recently been reported that there are over five trillion waste items in the Earth’s oceans as a result of plastic usage and incorrect disposal. This causes unprecedented damage to the ecosystem and food chain, and is a global crisis requiring urgent attention.

Plastic that is BPA-free

The boom in plastics throughout the 20th century led to manufacturers adding chemicals such as BPA to create a wide range of products, particularly rigid plastics. Usually manufacturers are secretive about what chemicals they add both to protect their techniques and processes but also to protect their reputation. Recently it has been found that adding BPA can have a detrimental impact on health when used for food storage items. Children’s lunch boxes and water bottles were particularly under scrutiny to ensure safety.

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Other options

There are a range of alternatives available that are both safe to use and also help to reduce the use of plastics. Whilst steel containers are excellent in storing food, they can be prone to leakages. Who wants their lunch dripping all over their bag during the commute to work? Those that have enjoyed the convenience and consistency of a leak-proof plastic lunch box for years would struggle to adapt to something that was going to cause leakage problems. Another material to consider is silicone. Whilst also man-made, silicone offers flexibility and prevents against leaks and doesn’t include damaging chemicals like plastics with BPA.

Using silicone moulding offers the chance to create a wide range of products. Manufacturers such as http://www.meadex.co.uk/silicone-mouldings are able to provide a range of solutions supporting silicone moulding design through to manufacturing.

Using silicone in place of plastics provides one of the most reusable and durable materials that are currently available. Interestingly, silicone is also longer lasting compared to plastic and can endure fluctuations in temperature without cracking or losing shape. The product also resists deterioration including being regularly cleaned with harsh chemicals and being exposed to the elements.

 

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