Oxo-biodegradable films are conventional films, in this case based on polypropylene. However, special additives have been added to these bio-films in order to break down the chemical bond between the individual molecules more quickly and thus accelerate the degradation process.
The products broken down on a chemical level can thus be used and decomposed much better by natural microorganisms such as bacteria, fungi and algae. The result of this improved usability on a microbial level is the splitting of the product into individual components: water, CO2, methane and biomass. Each polymer strand is broken down and the main components are thus available for aerobic degradation by microorganisms.
The significantly better environmental sustainability of these oxo-biodegradable films results from the faster degradation process compared to conventional products such as BOPP-films or PET-films – depending on the specific environmental and degradation conditions. Thanks to improved and faster degradation, biodegradable films contribute to waste reduction and thus to a lower ecological footprint. The degradation process of the films containing the oxo-biological additives does not start under normal application conditions, i.e. they can be used normally. Under special conditions such as heat stress and/or solar exposure, however, the process starts, if the required oxygen is available at the same time. Oxo-biodegradable films have therefore been designed in such a way that the decomposition process only begins as soon as the films end up as a waste product in landfills where the necessary conditions prevail.
The degradation process of conventional plastic films can last well over 50 years, while oxo-biodegradable films are dismantled by microorganisms in less than three years, provided that all conditions are right and an aerobic environment is present.
Durable and environmentally friendly – oxo-biodegradable films
The organic films have the same physical characteristics as traditional plastic films and are just as practical and durable. Special application and safety measures are therefore not required. The oxo-biodegradable films are available as thermal and wet laminating films, as well as in matt and glossy finishes. The available formats and sizes comply with the market standard. As alternatives to conventional laminating films, the described bio-films can therefore be used without any problems if additional aspects of environmental compatibility and sustainability are to be taken into account.