A Complete Guide to Compostable Gloves
Plastic pollution is not something new. We’ve all seen what improper waste disposal and continued use of single-use plastic can do not only to our landfills but to our seas. However, it is important to note that there are some efforts to recycle. Unfortunately, these current efforts are not enough to offset the growing amount of waste being produced. In fact, only 6% of the total plastic waste was recycled in 2021. A small number considering that the amount of plastic waste is expected to triple by 2060 if there are no increased efforts to shift towards more sustainable practices. When it comes to sustainable practices, even small eco-friendly changes can make big waves. And this is where compostable gloves come in.
What are Compostable Gloves?
Compostable gloves are made of plant-based polymers that are strong and durable when being used. Then, they break down when disposed of in a composting environment. This means they serve the same purpose as traditional healthcare and food service gloves but without adding to the problem of waste pollution.
When Can You Use Compostable Gloves?
Not all compostable gloves are created equal, so you need to be meticulous when making a choice. Compostable gloves that adhere to the International Safety Organization (ISO) and are certified by the Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI) can be used in the following settings:
Compostable gloves can be used as a general personal protective equipment, or PPE. When doing your grocery shopping, you can use these gloves to lessen your exposure to dirt or even germs that can be easily transmitted through touch. You can also use compostable gloves when taking care of the sick. Along with other general PPE like face masks or face shields, you can take care of others while minimizing the risk of getting sick yourself.
You can use compostable gloves for food prep at home or in a food service business. You can ensure that the food you serve is prepped and cooked with safety in mind. Additionally, you literally don’t need to get your hands dirty. Have you tried making something fermented or handling food with strong odors? The smell may need a lot of scrubbing—and, of course, water—to wash off. Using compostable gloves can save your skin, water, and the environment all in one go.
The food service industry has been identified as a major source of single-use plastic waste. Thanks to recent advancements, there are many eco-friendly practices for businesses in this industry. The only thing businesses need to do is make a conscious effort to adopt these practices. Consumers are getting smarter and expect more from the brands that they choose. You can switch from single-use gloves to compostable ones for food service: from the counter to the back of the house. Small steps taken by the majority of businesses can make a big difference and set a precedent that businesses can be both profitable and environmentally friendly.
Hospitality and Service Sector
Businesses like gas or fueling stations can help meet minimum safety standards by providing reliable and eco-friendly gloves by the pump. Hotels and even restaurants can install glove dispensers near their entrances. Doing so provides their guests the option to use compostable gloves for their own safety and peace of mind.
Whether you’re scrubbing your tiles clean, washing dishes, or taking out the trash, compostable gloves can protect your hands. Compostable gloves are comfortable and versatile. And if you have sensitive skin, you won’t have to worry about getting the allergic reactions that you would normally get from latex gloves.
Why Switch to Compostable Gloves? The Key Benefits for Homes and Businesses
Health and Safety
Switching to compostable gloves for your personal use allows you and your family to stay healthy and safe without the risk of allergic reactions to the skin. Compostable gloves are as durable as any commercial gloves on the market, so you’re not giving up quality or safety when you make the switch.
Businesses, especially those in the food service industry, are recommended by the FDA to wear gloves when serving customers. Single-use gloves protect both the employees and the customers by minimizing the spread of easily transmissible diseases. There may be businesses who are on the fence about going compostable, citing issues like sacrificing quality or overshooting expenses. But compostable gloves can help businesses meet the health and safety standards set by ruling bodies and even help their bottom line in the long run.
Both individuals and businesses can make an effort to help the planet. Adopting eco-friendly practices does not only affect your household or your business. It adds to the global sustainability efforts. After all, we all live on this one planet, so it’s up to everyone to take the steps, even small ones, to help save it.
More and more consumers are being more discerning when it comes to the products they buy. It’s not just about low prices anymore. Consumers expect more from the companies that want their loyalty (and money). Companies with clear, genuine advocacies, including sustainability, are more likely to get support from conscious consumers. Switching to compostable gloves is a simple and visible way to demonstrate that you’re not just a company that talks about eco-friendly practices but applies them as well.
What Certifications are Needed for a Glove to Be Compostable?
There are a lot of products being marketed as eco-friendly and compostable, but there are ways to make sure you’re getting truly compostable gloves. Compostable gloves are ones that are produced by companies that adhere to the strict International Safety Organization standards and have the following certifications:
EN 13432: Certifies that a product possesses the following characteristics: biodegradability, disintegration when it has undergone biological treatment, effect on the biological treatment process, and effect on the quality of the resulting compost.
ASTM D6400 & ASTM D6868: The standard specifications needed for the labeling of plastics designed to be composted aerobically.
In the United States, being certified compostable by the Biodegradable Products Institute means that a product has gone through a rigorous testing process that has been confirmed to meet these compostable standards.
Where Can You Buy Compostable Gloves?
When selecting where to buy compostable gloves, make sure that you choose those that meet the above-mentioned qualifications, like Eco Gloves. For personal use, you can conveniently purchase directly from the website. For bulk business orders, you can send your inquiries here.
Choosing to switch to compostable gloves is a step towards the right direction. Reducing waste, decreasing your carbon footprint, and supporting sustainability efforts are some of the top reasons why you should adopt the use of compostable gloves.
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