Industry News

Eco for Life Bottles: An Upstream Solution to Plastic in Our Oceans

On a short stay at the Aleenta Eco Resort in Southeast Asia, one of the founders of Eco for Life was offered water in a what they quickly realized was a remarkable bottle made from Polylactic Acid (or PLA for short).

 

Digging deeper, they learned that the bottle produces 60% less greenhouse gases and uses 50% less fossil fuels in its production, which is good for the environment. But even more fundamental, 100% of the bottle’s material comes from plants like corn, cassava and sugar beet. So, not only are these Eco for Life bottles fully biodegradable, but they won’t leach any pollutants into the contents they carry, because they do not contain any harmful chemicals.

Eco for Life bottles can be recycled into a product that can be used as a soil supplement. First, moisture and heat in the compost pile attacks the polymer chains and splits them apart, creating smaller polymers and finally lactic acid, a fully sustainable source. They can also be sent to Waste for Energy sites where they produce a high temperature and burn without releasing pollutant or they can be returned back to a polymer.

Production of the bottles starts with dextrose as the base feedstock used in a fermentation process (much like beer or wine), which converts sugar to lactic acid. That lactic acid is used to create a polymer, which is converted to produce the bottles. The dextrose comes from No. 2 yellow dent field corn in the U.S., which is already grown for many industrial & functional end-uses.

The resources used to make Eco for Life bottles is sustainable, there is an up to 60% reduction in carbon emissions over plastic bottles during manufacture, and producing bottles from PLAs saves a liter of oil per every 24 bottles. Because they biodegrade quickly, they reduce plastic pollution, and have a myriad of end of life streams with positive impacts. For more information, click here.

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