Reduce plastic additives for recycling

Episode 127 of the Access to Inspiration podcast highlights the importance of reducing plastic additives for recycling in order to address the challenges of plastic waste management. The speaker Monique Maissan, discusses the various types of plastics and the additives that are added to them for marketing and branding purposes. These additives make it difficult to recycle the plastics back to their base form, creating a significant barrier to effective recycling.

One of the main issues raised in the podcast is the excessive use of additives in plastics for aesthetic and marketing reasons. Companies often add additives to make their products stand out, whether it’s through color, texture, or shape. However, these additives make it challenging to recycle the plastics, as the additives can interfere with the recycling process. This leads to a significant amount of plastic waste that cannot be effectively recycled, contributing to environmental pollution and resource depletion.

Monique suggests that reducing the variations in plastic additives and simplifying the packaging design could make a significant difference in the recyclability of plastics. By encouraging big companies to come together and find solutions to reduce additives and create more sustainable packaging, we can move towards a more circular economy that prioritizes recycling and waste reduction.

The podcast also highlights the global differences in recycling practices, with some regions being more proactive in adopting recycled materials than others. While Europe has been an early adopter of recycled materials in the fashion industry, countries like the United States and Asia are catching up, often driven by government mandates and consumer awareness.

In terms of the textile industry, companies like Monique’s Waste2Wear sell recycled plastics to big brands that are committed to sustainability. These brands use the recycled textiles in their products, making a conscious choice to reduce their environmental impact and support a circular economy. This shift towards using recycled materials in textiles reflects a growing trend towards sustainability and environmental consciousness in the fashion industry.

In conclusion, reducing plastic additives for recycling is crucial for addressing the challenges of plastic waste management and promoting a more sustainable future. By simplifying packaging design, reducing the use of additives, and promoting the use of recycled materials, we can create a more circular economy that benefits both businesses and the environment. It is essential for companies, consumers, and policymakers to work together to prioritise recycling and waste reduction in order to create a more sustainable and environmentally friendly future.