Biodegradable Vs. Compostable Trash Bags

Biodegradable Vs. Compostable Trash Bags: A substance or object which has the capability of being decomposed by bacteria or other living organisms and thereby avoiding pollution are known as biodegradable objects such as food waste, human waste, paper waste, hospital waste etc.

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Compostable refers to a product that can disintegrate into non-toxic, natural elements. It also does so at a rate consistent with similar organic materials. A compostable product requires microorganisms, humidity, and heat to yield a finished compost product such as CO2, water, inorganic compounds, and biomass.Biodegradable Vs Compostable Trash Bags

In this modern world we are using plastic bags frequently knowing the fact that they are increasing the toxicity rate of the soil as they take a huge time to decompose in soil. But now we have options to avoid that toxicity and have a healthier earth.

There has been a lot of talk about the environmental impact of our consumer lifestyle, and one of the biggest sources of trash we produce is our throw away items. Recycling and composting are the best ways to reduce our trash and cut down on the amount of landfills we have to create.


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Compostable trash bags are now a growing trend. Different companies are making these bags from a renewable resource, such as cornstarch, and are designed to break down in commercial composting and/or anaerobic digestion systems. Biodegradable trash bags are equally doing the same work and also an increasingly popular alternative to regular trash bags. Natural chemicals found in living things, and are designed to break down in landfills are being used to make biodegradable bags. But exactly what is the difference between compostable trash bags and biodegradable trash bags?

Imagine you’re in a supermarket, and you are in need of a trash bag. “Do I buy a biodegradable or compostable bag,” you wonder? Now Let’s see if you have sense of the differences between these two categories of trash bags, and understand which one is best for you. Biodegradable plastic trash bags are made from ingredients that can be broken down by microorganisms. This means that within a matter of weeks, other living creatures, such as soil microorganisms, can react to biodegradable plastic and turn into its basic chemical components, such as carbon dioxide, water and biomass. On the other hand, Compostable plastic is plastic made from ingredients that can be broken down by heat, water and such as carbon dioxide, water and biomass.

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What is Biodegradable?

Biodegradable and Compostable are two different things. If you are searching for the answer for what exactly biodegradable is? Then the answer is, Biodegradable means a material or product that can be broken down into harmless substances by living things, such as microorganisms. Biodegradable and compostable often confuses people and some of then takes these two as the same, which is a material that can be broken down by living organisms into inorganic compounds, typically humus, but without the production of methane and CO2. Composting can be done by both industrial and home composting facilities. If you check leaves, grass clippings, or food scraps, then you will be able to realize that you might already be composting in your backyard or old-timey outhouse.Biodegradable trash bags


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What is compostable??

Now a days in the world of waste management and environmental protection Composting is a hot topic. Most of the time It is confused with recycling, as both share the same methods of waste reduction. However, they are absolutely different from one another. Recycling is a process to reuse the same product but composting is a process of extracting and reprocessing materials, composting uses some bacteria to break down organic waste into a usable and natural fertilizer. it gets done in three phases: the Aerobic Phase, the Anaerobic Phase, and the Vermicomposting Phase. The aerobic phase is executed in oxygenated air, and includes the introduction of water and other liquids into the waste, as well as the addition of oxygen. The anaerobic phase is executed in the absence of air, and the vermicomposting phase is executed in the presence of worms.

Compostable Trash Bags


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The difference between biodegradable and compostable trash bag:

Biodegradable and compostable trash bags are almost similar in the way that they are both environmentally friendly and both breaks down into natural elements over time. The similarities end here and here only. Generally people use biodegradable trash bags to take care of household trash that is put out to the curb. The way they are used is they keep sitting out in the open air and will be exposed to rain, sunlight, and the heat of the day. Environmentalists who are concern to save the environment have debated for long on biodegradable or compostable trash bags and tried to make their point on which product is better for the environment. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages that you should consider.

How fast does compostable and biodegradable bags degrade?

Material which are used to make a compostable bags comes from corn, sugarcane, and other plants, while material which are used to make a biodegradable bags comes from primarily from plant-based plastics. Scientists designed both to break down into the soil. But due to the making process they most often are more expensive than regular plastic bags, but they are worth that expense as they degrade into organic matter within very few time. In the disposal area, plastic doesn’t change its nature. Any bag which is compostable that should degenerate in soil in a way same to other plant affairs within between 90 to 180 days if used as calculated.

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Advantages of using biodegradable trash bags

  1. These are made from all natural materials
  2.  A great solution for taking out the trash
  3.  Most importantly break down into their component parts over time
  4. Environment friendly and does no harm to the nature
  5.  All of it decomposes under natural conditions
  6.  The manufacture process does not include any chemical components or petroleum based products
  7.  While using it shows no difference than a plastic bag
  8. They are not made from oil-derived ingredient but from renewable resources.

Disadvantages of using biodegradable trash bags

  1. They costs more than plastic bags
  2. They are not recyclable alike regular plastic
  3. You need a real composter to make products biodegrade.
  4. To produce biodegradable bags it requires more water, more energy, and more carbon dioxide emissions.
  5. As they are the look alike of plastic bags so there is possibility that Some companies in the market that produces biodegradable bags will actually deceive the consumer with plastic bags.

Advantages of using compostable trash bags

  1. After the use when they tries to decompose with soil then they provide natural nutrients to the nature.
  2.  Less carbon is used in business
  3. The waste will be derived more to the disposal area.
  4. Causes less air pollution
  5. These bags will be helping you by reducing the converse of new resources.
  6.  Reduces the amount of new material.

Disadvantages of using compostable trash bags

  1. They are made of non-renewable materials.
  2. They are irrational.
  3. They don’t have the proper disposal quality.
  4. Keeps hampering the wild life.
  5. Often the road side drains gets collapsed by it.


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Are compostable trash bags good for the environment?

You can’t just throw a compostable bag in the soil – they don’t have the capability to decompose in a garden or in the regular waste stream. these trash bags are made from some components  which can break down into organic materials when they are left in a hot, active compost pile for a few weeks. they do not have the capability to break apart in disposal fields either; the production of these products are meant to produce these kinds of bags to be disposed of in high-heat industrial composting facilities.

Are biodegradable trash bags worthy?

Now a days biodegradable trash bags are everywhere, they promise to degrade in a landfill where a plastic bag takes thousands of years to decompose itself in nature. And unlike their plastic counterparts, these bags can degrade naturally in landfills, meaning they won’t be creating toxic chemicals into the soil and water and help the nature to stay in its best form.

Is compostable trash bags better than biodegradable trash bags?

Compostable trash bags and biodegradable trash bags are not completely two different things but still they have their own differences. Compostable trash bags are made from a material that will break down in the compost pile. Compostable trash bags have the capability to get composted in a yard compost pile whereas biodegradable trash bags are not. Compostable trash bags are made of biodegradable materials, and they are designed to break down in your backyard compost bin, because they can’t be disposed of in a landfill. So, If a home owner is searching for a eco-friendly process to use the trash bags then compostable bags are more likely the product they will be looking for.

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How do you dispose of trash without plastic bags?

How to Line a Rubbish Bin without a Plastic Bag-

  1.  It’s a better option to use no liner at all.
  2.  You can use newspapers as liner for your trash bin.
  3. Other Repurposed Materials can be used as liner.
  4. Certified Compostable Bio-Based Bags are also good as an option to use as a liner.
  5.  Recycled Plastic Bin Liners can also be used if you want to use them as liner.

Does ecofriendly means compostable?

Eco friendly trash bags were designed to dissolve in compost piles or even in home compost piles. That brought a nice change from regular trash bags which are often made out of plastic. Most of the bags are not completely biodegradable, instead of that they are made with a tiny amount of biodegradable plastic which still causes harm. The main principle of a inventing biodegradable bag was that the bag will break down in the compost pile and will not be left in a landfill for a long time. But if you think otherwise then biodegradable bags can decompose in soil but compostable bags can’t and biodegradable bags are a good choice for the restaurants also. But still they have disadvantages as they break down anaerobically, which means without any oxygen, they produces methane, that’s a greenhouse gas which have bad impact on the environment and causes pollution.


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The debate over biodegradable v/s compostable trash bags has been going on from the time when they we invented, and the decision of using either one is often based on where these trash bags are coming from. Biodegradable trash bags are those which are made from natural materials, such as soy, corn and other plant based products. Normally these trash bags take a break down very fast and in as little as 18 months, this is a vast improvement over the 1,000 years it takes for a traditional plastic bag to decompose. Still there are a few disadvantages to using biodegradable trash bags, however. Unlike compostable trash bags, biodegradable bags don’t break down in compost bins or home compost piles. Biodegradable trash bags also can’t be recycled, so for people it is better to choose these bags as per their resources.


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