So many of us try to be responsible, eco-conscious consumers: we walk or bike to our local food co-op or natural foods store, our re-usable canvas shopping bags in tow. But try buying organic or green products that don’t come in petroleum-based plastic packaging and you’ll soon be presented with another slew of challenges. Those of us who’ve been frustrated by this reality will be happy to learn that there are some people and companies working to reduce the use of plastic packaging in the food industry. This week on Sea Change Radio, host Alex Wise speaks with the founder of a zero-waste grocery store opening soon in Austin, TX, a nut butter entrepreneur who hosted an industry-wide summit to come up with compostable squeeze packs and a snack chip executive whose company has introduced a greener bag for its products.
Can you think of two everyday materials with a worse environmental rep than Styrofoam and plastic bottles? From production through disposal, these things produce toxic gasses, are major culprits in our single-use disposable culture, and are rapidly invading our oceans and destroying marine food chains. This week’s guests on Sea Change Radio are each working on eco-friendly alternatives to these environmental villains.
First, we hear from Eben Bayer, one of the founders of Ecovative, a company that has developed a mushrom-based alternative to extruded polystyrene foam (more commonly known by its copyrighted name, Styrofoam). He tells us how Ecovative’s biologically-based material is replacing packing materials, insulation and maybe soon food storage containers that were previously the exclusive domain of polluting, non-biodegradable stuff. Next, host Alex Wise talks to Rick Eye, CEO of Blue Can Pure Water, a company offering an alternative to those ubiquitous plastic water bottles: on-the-go water in aluminum cans. He explains why it has taken so long for this much better idea to spring up, and discusses how he’s doing his part to reduce plastic waste.