Questions & Answers

Answers to the most frequently asked questions

Questions & Answers

Here you’ll find all the frequently asked questions that Pro Food has already answered.

01

Subject: Pro Food

  • No. Pro Food is a product group that brings together the 15 Italian companies associated with Unionplast.

  • They are all major companies that focus on manufacturing plastic containers and tableware for foods and beverages.

  • Pro Food companies are interested in improving the sustainability of their products. If you are also interested in becoming a part of Pro Food, please send us a message from the contacts page.

  • Pro Food improves and, where possible, increases the overall sustainability of plastic containers for foods and beverages, focusing on the entire product life cycle.
    We collaborate with all the players in the production, use and end of life chain, with particular focus on increasing recycling at the end of life.
    To that end, Pro Food has established training for LCA (Life Cycle Assessment) professionals, namely assessment of the entire life cycle of a product or service.

02

Subject: plastic containers for food

  • In fact, only the privileged few can do without such packaging. Hygiene, practicality and safety make them necessary for daily consumption of food.

  • From the 3rd of July 2021, some single-use plastic products may not be put marketed in the EU, including cutlery, plates, straws, stir sticks, styrofoam food containers, namely covered or coverless containers used for ready to eat food, styrofoam beverage containers and their stoppers and caps, and styrofoam beverage cups and their stoppers and lids.

    EU Directive 2019/904 of the European Parliament and Council of the 5th of June 2019 on reducing the percentage of specific plastic products in the environment. Published in the Official Gazette of the European Union, the 2nd of July 2019.

  • Plastic containers for fresh food are always recyclable. It is indeed essential that they be properly sorted and collected separately.

  • The advantages are many:

    • They reduce food waste because they store food properly and lengthen the life of foods and beverages.
    • They are lightweight, can hold more product as compared to alternate solutions and other packaging materials, so reduce the CO2 emissions from transport vehicles.
    • Their design makes them easy to stack and save substantial space in transport vehicles (requiring fewer means of transport) as well as at points of sale (require less refrigeration space and less power for proper storage).
    • They are hygienic and therefore useful to all communities, e.g. schools, hospitals and companies.
    • They are practical and easy to handle, encouraging consumption of fresh food at any time and including the 5 daily portions of fruits and vegetables recommended by the World Health Organization.

03

Subject: plastic and sustainability

  • Yes, plastic packaging is recyclable but, like all recyclable materials, it must be disposed of properly. From 2006 to 2018, the volume of plastic packaging for recycling increased by 41% against a 66% reduction in the amount dumped in landfills.
    Source: PlasticsEurope

  • Because a large part of plastic is not disposed of properly. Ninety percent of plastic refuse, not directly thrown into the water or onto the beach
    (in lesser numbers), is transported by rivers to the oceans, and 90% of this 90% is attributable to 10 large rivers, all outside of Europe (Africa or Asia).

    Source: Export of Plastic Debris by Rivers into the Sea. Christian Schmidt, Tobias Krauth and Stephan Wagner. Environmental Science & Technology 2017.

  • In Italy, plastic packaging production provides employment to thousands of people and is the second largest industry in Europe with a good 42% of products exported. A growing industry that provides breathing space for the Italian economy requires the support of innovation. A new tax would only serve to delay the necessary investments and even put employment at risk.

    Source: Federazione Gomma Plastica [Italian Plastics and Rubber Federation]

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