About composting materials

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About composting materials

Composting is a nature’s way of recycling: a natural biological process that turns organic material into a dark rich substance. This substance, called compost or humus, is a wonderful conditioner for soil. This natural composting process is also called home composting. Examples of home compostable material are manure, leaves and grass trimmings.

Many materials, like plastic, do not compost at all or take hundreds of years to compost. An additional problem caused by plastic is that it degrades into small particles that pollute our soil, oceans and ultimately poison our food chain.

Waste processing companies use industrial composting to shorten the composting period. For industrial composting moisture, pressure and heat are added to the composting facility. The industrial composting process requires intensive use of energy resources. Industrial composting is suitable for limited types of material.

Many producers claim their products are compostable. Until now, these claims always refer to industrial composting. 

Plastics and aluminum (much used for cans and capsules) are not suitable for industrial composting. Both need to be removed from the compostable material to prevent pollution of the compost. Plastics and aluminum need incineration or recycling.

Home compostable items do not need recycling. Home compostable items disappear naturally in a non-polluting way. Even when home compostable items end up in nature, the material will compost within a year and disappear completely. Hence, there are no particles left that pollute or poison of our environment.

Home Compostable Polymer, our new material to produce coffee capsules, is fully home compostable. 

The development of home compostable material is an important contribution to solve the pollution of our environment.

Standards for composting

    • The EU now has a standard for industrial composting (EN 13432)
    • For home composting there’s only an Australian Standard (AS 5810-2010)


Home compostable material

Material that compost by a natural biological process that turns organic material into humus.

Industrial compostable material

Material that’s composts in an industrial composting plant where moisture, pressure and heat are added.

Degradable material

Material that under natural of industrial conditions breaks down into small particles without change of the materials’ characteristics.

Bio degradable material

Material that under natural of industrial conditions breaks down into water, carbon, dioxide and biomass.