Corn plastic vs. Petroleum Based Plastic
Prices for plastic for the last 6 month have gone up from 40 to 50% due to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, higher gas prices and insufficient amounts of raw materials. Resin, made out of natural gas, is a major raw material in plastic industry. Plastic is used as a packaging material in almost every industry.
However, consumers do not see the increase in prices for products in plastic packaging because it is the middle of the season and producers do not want to disturb the market price. That is why it is more costly now for producers to use plastic as a packaging material. Higher prices for plastic prices are decreasing producers’ income. The increase in price for plastic made out of natural gas gave a push to alternative methods of producing plastic.
Plastic made out of corn starch has been introduced to the consumers of deli meat in the state of Ohio. Unlike the petroleum based plastic, corn starch resin biodegrades after being throw away. However, putting it into the microwave is not advisable.
Packaging industry is not the only place where it can be use. Corn plastic will soon be used in the carpeting industry and in the production of bedding.
Even though it is hard to say right now what is cheaper: production of petroleum based plastic or cornstarch plastic, it sounds like corn starch plastic is more effective: causes less damages to the environent.