By Krissy Waite
Bolstering activists' demands to reduce plastic pollution worldwide, Arizona State University scientists on Monday presented their research on finding micro- and nanoplastics in human organs to the American Chemical Society.
- Microplastics Are Increasing in Our Lives, New Research Finds ... ›
- Microplastics Found in Antarctic Sea Ice Samples for First Time ... ›
- Study: 93% of Bottled Water Contains Microplastics - EcoWatch ›
- People Eat 50,000+ Microplastics Every Year, New Study Finds ... ›
- Microplastics Are Raining Down on Cities - EcoWatch ›
- New Study: 15.5 Million Tons of Microplastics Litter Ocean Floor - EcoWatch ›
- Bottle-Fed Babies May Consume Millions of Microplastic Particles a Day ›
- Microplastics Discovered Near Mount Everest Summit - EcoWatch ›
- 550 Groups Urge Biden to Become #PlasticFreePresident With 8 Executive Actions - EcoWatch ›
The first U.S. study of the effect on people of exposure to a hormone-disrupting chemical widely used in food packaging showed that levels the Food and Drug Administration deems "safe" can alter insulin response, a key marker for diabetes.
The groundbreaking study, published in the Journal of the Endocrine Society, administered low doses of bisphenol A, or BPA, to 16 people, then tested their insulin production in response to glucose, commonly called blood sugar. When insulin and blood glucose levels were compared to the same measurements taken without exposure to BPA, researchers found that BPA significantly changed how glucose affected insulin levels. Similar insulin and glucose tests are used by doctors for diagnosing diabetes.
Kidney stones are hard deposits that form in the kidneys. They are produced when minerals and salts, most commonly calcium oxalate, crystallize in the kidneys, creating hard, crystal-like stones. If you've ever had a kidney stone, we're sure you won't want to repeat the experience!
Ideally, you never want to have to go through this painful process. Fortunately, several steps and natural treatments can be used to reduce the chances of suffering them. In this article we'll examine how these annoying solidifications originate and how to treat them effectively and quickly with natural remedies.
The campaign to re-elect President Donald Trump has found a new way to troll liberals and sea turtles.
What's the last thing you ate? Chances are you took a big bite of plastic.
- Humans Eat More Than 100 Plastic Fibers With Each Meal - EcoWatch ›
- Microplastics Found in Antarctica's Food Chain for First Time - EcoWatch ›
- Microplastics Are Increasing in Our Lives, New Research Finds - EcoWatch ›
- Seafood Study Finds Plastic in 100% of Samples - EcoWatch ›
- Microplastics Found in Human Organs for First Time - EcoWatch ›
- Paint: The Big Source of Ocean Microplastics You Didn’t Know About - EcoWatch ›
- Bottle-Fed Babies May Consume Millions of Microplastic Particles a Day ›
- Microplastics Exposed to Water More Likely to Invade Animals ›
The U.S. generates almost 80 million tons of packaging waste each year, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. When landfilled or incinerated, this waste pollutes the environment and poses health risks to humans and wildlife. Packaging is also the main source of the plastic pollution that is clogging the ocean and expected to exceed the weight of all fish by 2050 at current rates. The food industry is largely responsible for this growing packaging problem.
Alter Eco<p>Alter Eco set out a decade ago to find sustainable alternatives to the non-recyclable flexible plastic used for their chocolate truffle wrappers and stand-up pouch packaging. After several years of research and development, Alter Eco released the <a href="https://sustainablebrands.com/read/chemistry-materials-packaging/alter-eco-s-gone4good-packaging-eliminates-plastic-pouch-problem" target="_blank">first</a> ever <a href="https://www.gone4good.com/" target="_blank">laminated stand-up pouch</a> made of plant-based compostable materials for their quinoa products. For the truffles, Alter Eco now partners with <a href="http://www.futamuragroup.com/divisions/cellulose-films/products/natureflex/" target="_blank">Natureflex</a> to make a compostable wrapper <a href="http://composed/" target="_blank">made</a> of eucalyptus and birch trees with <a href="https://www.newhope.com/supply-news-amp-analysis/guayaki-announces-ultimate-green-packaging-biodegradable-compostable" target="_blank">microscopic aluminum layers</a> that maintain freshness. The packaging will compost in home and industrial facilities and will <a href="http://www.futamuragroup.com/sustainability/certifications/" target="_blank">biodegrade in the ocean</a>. Alter Eco also uses non-toxic ink on all their packaging. For chocolate bar packaging, Alter Eco uses Forest Steward Council (<a href="https://us.fsc.org/en-us" target="_blank">FSC</a>) certified paperboard that comes from sustainably managed forests.</p>
BOSS Foods<p>BOSS Food's vegan superfood bars use compostable wrappers. The wrappers are made by <a href="https://tipa-corp.com/general/b-o-s-s-food-co-s-clean-label-products-called-compostable-packaging/" target="_blank">TIPA</a><u>.</u> TIPA's <a href="https://tipa-corp.com/products/" target="_blank">propriety</a> bio-based blend has all <a href="https://www.plasticethics.com/home/2018/11/15/tipa-an-innovative-company-producing-compostable-flexible-packaging-could-save-the-world" target="_blank">the properties of normal plastic</a> but is <a href="https://tipa-corp.com/sustainability_in_packaging/" target="_blank">certified</a> for industrial and home composting. TIPA <a href="https://www.newhope.com/manufacturing-and-supply-business-resources/tipa-create-next-generation-packaging-compostable" target="_blank">conducts</a> shelf-life tests with each brand they work with to ensure the same shelf life as conventional packaging.</p>
Boxed Water is Better<p>Reusable bottles are the most sustainable way to haul around water. But when that's not an option, Boxed Water is Better offers a more environmentally friendly alternative to plastic bottles. The 100 percent recyclable box is 75 percent paper. The cap is made of plastic, and the rest is aluminum lining. The packaging is free of BPAs and phthalates. The paper comes from well-managed forests, and they use some of their profits for <a href="https://boxedwaterisbetter.com/pages/planting-trees" target="_blank">planting trees</a> in areas affected by deforestation and fires. The boxes flatten for shipping to regional filling locations, reducing the companies carbon footprint by using one truck for every 26 trucks needed for shipping plastic bottles.</p>
Buddy Fruits<p>Some companies would like to use more sustainable packaging but feel the nature of their product makes it difficult or impossible with available options. Recycling facilities can't accept the flexible plastic pouches Buddy Fruits uses for their small-batch fresh fruit purees. Sustainability is an important part of their brand, but the highly perishable product needs to be as airtight as possible. While searching for a more sustainable and equally secure alternative, BuddyFruits has partnered with <a href="https://www.terracycle.com/en-US/brigades/honest-kids" target="_blank">TerraCycle</a>. Terracycle collects and recycles hard to recycle products and makes new materials and products. Buddy Fruits customers can request an envelope from TerraCycle to ship-in their empty pouches. Many other food and beverage companies, like <a href="https://www.whiteleafprovision.com/pages/terracycle" target="_blank">White</a><a href="https://www.whiteleafprovision.com/pages/terracycle" target="_blank"> Leaf</a><a href="https://www.whiteleafprovision.com/pages/terracycle" target="_blank"> Provi</a><a href="https://www.whiteleafprovision.com/pages/terracycle" target="_blank">sions</a>, partner with TerraCycle for the same reasons as Buddy Fruits.</p>
Celestial Tea<p>Celestial Tea does not use strings, staples, and individual wrappers for its tea bags. The company says these practices prevent 3.5 million pounds of landfill material a year. Celestial's tea bags are compostable, and their outer boxes are made with 100 percent recycled paperboard.</p>
Don Maslow Coffee<p><a href="https://sprudge.com/the-truth-about-compostable-coffee-bags-105358.html" target="_blank">Several companies</a> sell coffee in bags that claim to be compostable but are not actually certified for composting. These bags use non-compostable plastic parts to keep them airtight. Fully compostable bags without these parts are also available, but they can't keep the coffee fresh for as long. A couple years ago, <a href="https://elevatepackaging.com/" target="_blank">Elevate Packaging</a> released the first coffee bag with compostable zippers and valves. Now Dan Maslow Coffee is one of the first to sell products in these <a href="https://donmaslowcoffee.com/blogs/sustainability/elevate-packaging" target="_blank">certified compostable bags</a>.</p>
GF Harvest<p>Instant meals are convenient in today's busy society, but they use <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/feb/14/meal-kits-cut-food-waste-but-packaging-is-a-problem-study-finds" target="_blank">lots of packaging</a>. GF Harvest offers sustainable to-go option with their <a href="http://glutenfreeoats.com/go/" target="_blank">GoPack</a> oatmeal bowls. The <a href="https://ecotensil.com/newsletters/where-sustainability-meets-grab-n-go-packaging/" target="_blank">recyclable bowls</a> are made from the <a href="https://www.graphicpkg.com/products/integraflex/" target="_blank">IntegraFlex collapsible cup</a>, with a rigid outer carton and an inner liner. The packaging comes flat to save space. When the customer is ready to eat, they prop up the outer layer into a bowl and add hot water. GoPacks come with a wrapped <a href="https://ecotensil.com/about/sustainability/" target="_blank">paper spoon</a> that is partially made from FSC certified paper and is recyclable wherever coffee cups are recyclable.</p>
Guayaki<p>This sustainability-focused yerba mate company is constantly seeking to reduce their packaging's environmental impact. It has been a difficult and on-going process — they identify packaging as the largest contributor to their overall GHG emissions. <a href="https://guayaki.com/regeneration-business-model/" target="_blank">Almost all</a> of Guyaki's packaging is recyclable bottles and cans, and they sell their loose leaf yerba mate in compostable <a href="http://www.biomasspackaging.com/brands/natureflex/" target="_blank">Natureflex</a> bags. They recently reduced their annual packaging use by 44,000 pounds by eliminating the overwrap and tea string from their single-use mate bags. A large portion of their cans are made of half previously recycled aluminum and use 95 percent less energy than conventional aluminum cans.</p>
Honest Tea<p>Honest Tea has <a href="https://www.c2ccertified.org/get-certified/product-certification" target="_blank">Cradle to Cradle</a> certification on their glass bottles. The certification indicates high marks in several sustainable indicators: use of reutilized materials, water stewardship, material safety, and use of renewable energy. Honest Tea is also in the process of rolling out new Tetra Pak packaging for their line of kids juices. <a href="https://www.tetrapak.com/us/sustainability/carton-recycling" target="_blank">Tetra Pak</a> is 75 percent FSC certified carton, and the rest is a mixture of plastic polymers and aluminum. Numerous <a href="http://tpcomprod.blob.core.windows.net/static/in/documents/good%20for%20you,%20good%20for%20the%20earth.pdf" target="_blank">studies</a> have found that the life-cycle GHG emissions of Tetra Pak is generally the lowest of packaging types. But not all recycling programs accept mixed material cartons like Tetra Pak, and <a href="http://www.exchangeorcas.org/non-recyclable-item-of-the-month-tetrapak/" target="_blank">some</a> that do end up sending the cartons to the dump or incinerator.</p>
Love the Wild<p>After a year of development and testing, Loving the Wild recently <a href="https://www.foodnavigator-usa.com/Article/2019/03/13/Seafood-kit-company-LoveTheWild-overhauls-its-packaging-branding-to-further-its-sustainability-mission" target="_blank">released</a> a compostable tray for their line of ready-to-cook sustainable seafood meals. The tray is certified compostable and made from plant-based plastic. Loving the Wild will come out with a microwaveable version later this year.</p>
Loving Earth<p>Loving Earth's <a href="https://www.econicpack.com/econic-enhances-the-sustainability-of-loving-earth-chocolate/" target="_blank">chocolate bar</a> and <a href="https://www.econicpack.com/econic-packaging-launched-by-loving-earth/" target="_blank">superfood bar</a> packaging is made with <a href="https://www.econicpack.com/products/" target="_blank">Econic</a>, a compostable film derived from FSC certified wood pulp and non-gmo corn. Their chocolate boxes and line of boxed cereals <a href="https://m.lovingearth.net/blog/blog/2016/02/17/sustainable-packaging/" target="_blank">are made of</a> 100 percent recycled wood fibers. The inner bag of the cereal boxes is made from Econic. All of Loving Earth's products use non-toxic vegetable-based printing ink to prevent contamination of water supplies and compost piles. Loving Earth has also taken a sustainable packaging approach to all most all of their <a href="https://lovingearth.net/our-products.html" target="_blank">wide range of other </a><a href="https://lovingearth.net/our-products.html" target="_blank">products</a>. </p>
Mindful Inc<p>Mindful Inc packages their organic tea lines in Tetra Pak with a plant-based cap. Tetra Pak offers this cap as an option to companies utilizing their technology. The <a href="https://innovationcreatesvalue.tetrapak.com/story/a-sweet-deal-on-caps/" target="_blank">cap</a> is made of plastic derived from sugarcane, and its production process has a smaller GHG footprint than conventional plastic caps.</p>
No Evil Foods<p>No Evil Foods' vegetarian meat alternatives come in <a href="https://www.packagingdigest.com/packaging-design/compostable-crafted-cartons-perform-for-artisan-food-brand-2017-09-25" target="_blank">compostable packaging</a> made by <a href="http://ipp.nl/kraftpak/?lang=en" target="_blank">Kraftpak</a> and are printed with plant-based ink. Previously, No Evil Foods used butcher paper with a non-biodegradable sticker, making it difficult to compost the butcher paper. Kraftpak is a biodegradable unbleached carton board that seals with water-soluble adhesives. The packaging unfolds like origami to mimic the unfolding of butcher paper. Kraftpak is also certified for recycling.</p>
Numi Organic Teas<p><a href="https://numitea.com/eco-responsibility/" target="_blank">'</a><a href="https://numitea.com/eco-responsibility/" target="_blank">E</a><a href="https://numitea.com/eco-responsibility/" target="_blank">co-responsible packaging'</a> is part of Numi's environmentally and socially conscious business model. Their efforts include opting for biodegradable non-gmo filter-paper tea bags instead of nylon bags, using boxes made of 85 percent recycled paper products, and using soy-based inks. They are working with 30 other companies to develop the first home-compostable, plant-based, non-gmo material overwrap for tea bags. Also, Numi sells gift boxes made of bamboo, a more <a href="https://www.bamboogrove.com/why-bamboo-save-planet.html" target="_blank">sustainable</a> alternative to slower growing trees. In their last annual sustainability audit, Numi <a href="https://numitea.com/impactreport/" target="_blank">calculated</a> that their packaging choices conserved 5,000 trees, 659 thousand pounds of GHG emissions, 4 million gallons of water, and 317 thousand pounds of waste.</p>
Saltwater Brewery<p>The six-pack rings on this brewery's beers are 100 percent biodegradable and edible. Saltwater is one of a handful of breweries now using <a href="https://www.e6pr.com/" target="_blank">Eco Six Pack Rings</a> technology. Saltwater makes the rings from barley and wheat ribbons leftover from brewing. The rings compost within a few days. On open land and in the ocean, the rings decompose in a few weeks. The rings are not <a href="https://earth911.com/eco-tech/eco-friendly-six-pack-rings/" target="_blank">recommended</a> for consumption, but animals can safely eat them. But if left to decompose in an open area, the rings can still potentially entrap marine life and other animals.</p>
Strauss Family Creamery<p>For 25 years, Strauss Family Creamery has <a href="https://www.strausfamilycreamery.com/pioneering-straus-family-creamery-celebrates-25-years-of-commitment-to-the-planet-farmers-and-food/" target="_blank">packaged</a> organic milk in reusable glass bottles made with up to 30 percent recycled glass. Customers <a href="https://www.strausfamilycreamery.com/pioneering-straus-family-creamery-celebrates-25-years-of-commitment-to-the-planet-farmers-and-food/" target="_blank">can</a> rinse their bottles and return them to the store where purchased to get back a US$2.00 deposit. Strauss then takes the bottles back to their facilities to reuse the bottles an average of five times before recycling them. The company has an 80 percent return rate on bottles, keeping about 500,000 pounds of milk containers and plastic out of landfills each year.</p>
These days, mobile phone chargers and cables can be picked up at just about any drug store or gas station. But these products can be cheaply made, come in unnecessary plastic packaging, and certainly add to world's toxic and growing electronic waste, or e-waste, problem
With that in mind, Nimble has launched a line of sustainably made mobile accessories that include wireless charging pads, stands and travel kits.
One of the major health concerns associated with the widespread use of plastics is exposure to bisphenol A (BPA). BPA is an endocrine disruptor, meaning it mimics the effects of estrogen on the body and has been linked to the growth of tumors in the breast, uterus and prostate, impacts on pregnancy and fertility and disruption of the sexual development of the fetus that can cause cancer later in life.
By Sydney Evans and Ketura Persellin
"Lose weight." "Exercise." "Save money."
By Monica Amarelo and Samara Geller
No one disputes that bisphenol A, a toxic compound widely used to line food cans and other food packaging, is polluting people. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found BPA in the urine of more than 90 percent of Americans sampled. In 2009, tests commissioned by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) were the first to find BPA in the umbilical cords of nine of 10 infants sampled.
By Leah Segedie
It seems like such a simple thing, but the act of signing and handling a receipt can increase the amount of hormone disrupting chemicals bisphenol-A (BPA) or bisphenol-S (BPS) inside your body significantly. And this is problematic if you are trying to lose weight, wanting to have calm and intelligent children one day, suffering from anxiety, depression, inflammation or food sensitivities or wanting to avoid cancers. Bisphenols (BPA & BPS) have the ability to hijack your hormonal systems at very small levels, so what are they doing in thermal receipt paper and how are they getting into our bodies? That answer is complicated but here we go!
By Olga Naidenko
Mixtures of chemicals commonly found in consumer products are more likely to increase breast cancer risk than the same chemicals individually, according to a new analysis. But safety tests by government regulators don't routinely evaluate the combined effects of multiple chemical exposures.
By Sydney Swanson
As we head into the holiday season, the marathon task of preparing a Thanksgiving dinner or even just one dish to contribute as a guest—may be stressful.
To help you combat the inevitable stress surrounding this meal, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) has put together this guide suggesting what to make yourself and what to buy, and when to go organic.