Study of the Biodegrability of Degradable/Biodegradable Plastic Material in a Controlled Composting Environment
The objective of this study was to determine the degrability/biodegradability of disposable plastic bags available on the market that are labeled as degradable/biodegradable and those certified as compost. The investigated materials were obtained from chain stores in the Czech Republic and Poland. Seven kinds of bags (commercially available) were used in this study. One of them was a disposable bag made of HDPE and mixed with totally degradable plastic additive (TDPA additive). Another was a disposable made of polyethylene with the addition of pro-oxidant additive (d2w additive). One was labeled as 100% degradable within various periods of time, from three months up to three years, and four were certified as compostable. The test was carried out in a controlled composting environment. The biodisintegration degree of the obtained pieces was evaluated following a modified version of ČSN EN 14806 Norm "Packaging - Preliminary evaluation of the disintegration of the packaging materials under simulated composting conditions in a laboratory scale test" and a modified version of ČSN EN ISO 20200 "Plastics - Determination of the degree of disintegration of plastic materials under simulated composting conditions in laboratory-scale test" (ISO 20200:2004). The emphasis was put on determination whether the bags are degradable/biodegradable or not.