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The Essentials of Bioplastics

Developed by The Sustainable Packaging Coalition®

Part of the full Essentials of Sustainable Packaging Training Program

The Essentials of Bioplastics dives into the diverse family of bio-based and biodegradable plastics. This course covers sourcing and end-of-life considerations for bio-based and biodegradable plastics. With both recyclable and compostable bioplastics on the market, the Essentials of Bioplastics explores strategies for communicating this complexity to consumers.

In addition, the course examines streamlined life cycle assessments to better understand the trade-offs between various environmental impact categories. It also explores the standards and certifications that are relevant to bioplastics marketing claims. 

To put it all in context, the Essentials of Bioplastics also considers how and why companies have set corporate goals around bioplastics and integrated bioplastics into packaging and product portfolios.

Course curriculum: 

  • The Basics of Bioplastics – Understanding the family of bioplastics
  • “Drop-in” Bioplastics – Today’s most prevalent type of bioplastic  
  • Biodegradable Bioplastics – Key considerations for biodegradability 
  • Marketing Claims – Standards and certifications for products

Course length: 40 minutes

Learning Objectives: 

After taking this course, the Learner will be able to:

  1. Define the terms “bio-based,” “compostable” and “biodegradable” 
  2. Evaluate the environmental tradeoffs in the life cycle phases of bioplastics
  3. Recognize the characteristics of various industry standards and certifications 

What learners are saying:

  • Great course. Easy to follow and understand. 
  • Excellent overview course, provides good basic info without a big-time commitment.  
  • This whole course was very beneficial and applicable to my role … All was valuable knowledge!  
  • Good emphasis on the environmental trade-offs with bioplastics. 
  • This was my favorite course so far!  

The Essentials of Material Health is included in the online subscription to The Essentials of Sustainable Packaging.

Courses in The Essentials of Sustainable Packaging:

Essentials of Sustainable Packaging Core Content
Project 1 of 5

Essentials of Sustainable Packaging Core Content

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Essentials of Ocean Plastic Pollution
Project 2 of 5

Essentials of Ocean Plastic Pollution

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Essentials of Sourcing Fiber
Project 3 of 5

Essentials of Sourcing Fiber

Learn more
Essentials of Compostable Packaging
Project 4 of 5

Essentials of Compostable Packaging

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Essentials of Material Health
Project 5 of 5

Essentials of Material Health

Learn more

From the SPC blog:

Bioplastics in Packaging

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