About a year ago I acquired a few of the fancy new corn-based biodegradable plastic bags at a couple of City events. When I was done with them I dropped them in my Green Cone food composter.
You use Green Cones by dropping all your kitchen vegetable waste into them, then let them lie undisturbed for about a year (it's best to have 2 of them) and open them up and take out the lovely moist soil that the food waste has transmogrified into, and put it on your garden!
I opened my Green Cone last week to find that all the vegetables had indeed rotted down to dirt but that (even after a year) the plastic bags were (Drum Roll, yes you guessed it) unchanged and good as new.
I fished the bags out, cleaned them off and photographed them to prove it to you!
Pictures (from the top):
- Green Cone
- Food waste before rotting
- Food waste after a year's rotting away: lovely soil but bags unchanged!
- Several of the bags
- Closeup of a bag: made by Trellis Earth Products Inc. See today's Capitol Hill Seattle post, noting that Taco Del Mar is using "biodegradable" plastic ware from that company.
My sample was small: two of one type of bag, and two of another. However, as you can see from the pictures: none of them showed any sign of decomposing, even after a year in intimate contact with rotting vegetables and worms.
The City of Seattle has outlawed styrofoam ware, so venders will be using (and you will be paying for) these supposedly "biodegradable" items.
My question: Are they really any more biodegradable than my seemingly immortal "biodegradable" bags?