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Boulder Canyon Claims First Compostable Packaging for Natural Snacks

Boulder Canyon Natural Foods claims that its compostable package for its All Natural Kettle Cooked Potato Chip line is the first developed for the natural snack food category. The 7.5-ounce bag is made from wood pulp sourced from plantations that have Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC) or similar certification. The new packaging is currently available at select Whole Foods stores across the United States.

The compostable packaging is made from materials that are certified to meet the “Specification for Compostable Plastics” standards set by the American Society for Testing and Materials. They can be composted in home or industrial composters, recycled through approved organic recycling programs, or incinerated at modern incineration plants.

The compostable bag has a 180 days or less compostability measure per the Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI). The bags were developed through a partnership using NatureFlex brand film from Innovia Films and Genpak.

A recent study from Global Industry Analysts indicates that biodegradables represent the fastest growing segment in the packaging industry.

Boulder Canyon says the wood pulp bag “feels” and “sounds” like a traditional paper bag of chips compared to noisier corn starch-based bags on the market to date.

The company’s comments are in response to recent complaints by consumers that the SunChips compostable bag, introduced earlier this year, is too noisy. They have compared the noise to a “revving motorcycle” and “glass breaking,” reports The Wall Street Journal.

One consumer recorded a 95 decibel level with a RadioShack sound meter, according to the article. In comparison, another Frito-lay brand traditional plastic bag recorded a 77 decibel level.

Brad Rodgers, Frito-Lay’s North American manager of sustainable packaging, told the newspaper the bags are loud due to the new polymers’ higher “glass transition temperature” — when the polymers transition from a harder glasslike state to a rubber state above room temperature. He says the bag gets “kind of crispy and crunchy.”

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3 thoughts on “Boulder Canyon Claims First Compostable Packaging for Natural Snacks

  1. Any BPA in the compostable chip bag? The bag is healthier for the environment but it’s contents are not healthy for the
    consumer.

  2. We have successfully composted 4 bags (the loud Sunchip bags) in our residential composter. I have literally watched them degrade! Great solution for good food. Sunchips are healthy snack food (as healthy as snack can be in general really)…

  3. Interesting to “hear” that the noisey bag issue is being taken to heart by those in marketing. This issue has been repeatedly brought to the attention of the Sun Chips brand managers at Frito-Lay. At least the Sun Chip plant in AZ uses solar PV to run daytime operations!

    Both firms are moving in the right direction. This is a positive trend. At least my family has learned how to “handle” the Sun Chips bag to reduce noise at the dinner table.

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