When it comes to using or creating food packaging that is compostable and biodegradable, or recycled, or re-usable, plenty of new food businesses have learned the hard way that good intentions and good packaging don’t always mesh.
First off, the cost of packaging can easily exceed the cost of the food that goes within. Even when you’re starting up and buying off-the-shelf packaging. A few years ago I set out to sell rice caramels and cheese crackers at the underground farmer’s market. Oh how thrilling to quickly find compostable cellophane candy wrapper supplier and bag supplier online!
I loaded up. The shipment came. And that’s when it dawned on me (or rather a disclaimer told me): this wood-based packaging had a very short shelf life. Like, just a few months. The same value proposition that led me to buy the packaging was its downfall. Only it hadn’t occurred to me that the bags and cellophane wrappers would degrade merely sitting in my cabinet.
Jars, plastic, foil, recycled cardboard, soy-based inks…so many options these days, all with tradeoffs in cost, shelflife, usability, something I loved writing about in ye olde book.
In the meantime, if you too are on the quest for compostable cello bags, know you are not alone…watch Michelle from Nana Joes Granola tell her story: