High street giant bags landfill breakthrough

A NEW type of plastic bag that can biodegrade even when sent to landfill has been introduced by one of the UK’s leading retailers.
John Lewis describes the material as “ground-breaking” and the first-of-its-kind in the UK.
It replaces the conventional polyethylene used in packaging for the superstore’s bed linen and some school-wear items.
The technology contains an additive biodegrade which will break down in five to 15 years compared with hundreds of years for conventional plastic bags.
The additives work by encouraging naturally occurring micro-organisms in the soil to biodegrade the material without leaving any harmful by-products. The resulting products are water, biogas and humus, which are necessary components for good soil.
John Lewis plans to extend the product lines to package own-brand ready-made curtains. Following an initial six months of exclusive use, John Lewis will make the technology behind the new packaging available to other retailers.
Mark Gallen, the company’s packaging design and production manager, who carried out the research, said: “We know that our customers want to reduce their environmental impact, and this new material makes it easy for them to do this.”