SEATTLE, WA and WYANDOTTE, MI--(Marketwire - Sep 4, 2012) - BASF, The Chemical Company, has made a game-changing breakthrough towards sustainable snack packaging that can help companies and communities everywhere get closer to their goal of zero-waste.
On September 5, BASF will partner with one of the greenest teams in Major League Baseball, The Seattle Mariners, and use the iconic snack of the American pastime, peanuts, to debut prototype packaging developed with its advanced biopolymer technology. The first 10,000 fans to arrive at Safeco Field that day to see the Seattle Mariners take on the Boston Red Sox will receive a free bag of peanuts in a 100 percent compostable snack bag.
"Flexible packaging with this BASF technology is a big step forward for the snack food industry," said Kimberley Schiltz, Market Development Manager-Consumer Packaging, BASF. "It means that popular snack foods can be brought to market in compostable packaging that delivers needed shelf-life at a competitive price point, with a more sustainable 'end-of-life' solution than with conventional packaging materials."
As a member of the Green Sports Alliance, the Seattle Mariners' aggressive zero-waste goals make Safeco Field a natural place for BASF to introduce this new sustainable snack packaging to the American public. This season, the team is on track to divert 85% of its waste from landfills, up from just 12 percent in 2006. Mariners VP of Operations, Scott Jenkins, has his sights set on 90 percent diversion, but closing the gap has proven to be an elusive goal. "All of our service ware is already compostable, but snack food bags have been one of the biggest barriers preventing us from getting to our goal," said Jenkins. "Flexible packaging made with BASF biopolymers could represent the holy grail of greening for our waste stream."
Like all advances in sustainability, major breakthroughs must balance economic and environmental interests. As Jenkins puts it, "Whenever there are contaminants in our compost stream, like regular snack bags and candy wrappers, we have to pay a premium to have them removed by hand. If all of the snacks sold at Safeco came in compostable packaging, it would represent a significant savings of time and money for the team and get us a whole lot closer to achieving zero waste."
People who follow the industry may remember earlier attempts to introduce fully compostable snack packaging that fell short of consumer expectations. BASF's biopolymers technology can meet those expectations and provide a viable solution to the snack food packaging industry.
"Compostable snack food packaging made with BASF's advanced technology can put us much further down the path to a zero-waste world, much faster," said Stephan Banchero, Cedar Grove Composting, General Manager.
As municipalities grapple with how best to implement greening initiatives and engage citizens, this kind of technology could represent a more convenient alternative to the punitive approach already in place in some cities.
"We welcome technological advances like this that inspire our entire society to move toward sustainability and help municipalities like the City of Seattle divert more waste than ever away from landfills," said Brett Stav, Seattle Public Utilities, Senior Planning & Development Specialist.
To learn more about BASF advanced biopolymers technology, please visit us at:
BASF - The Chemical Company
BASF Corporation, headquartered in Florham Park, New Jersey, is the North American affiliate of BASF SE, Ludwigshafen, Germany. BASF has more than 16,000 employees in North America, and had sales of $20 billion in 2011. For more information about BASF's North American operations, visit www.basf.us.
BASF is the world's leading chemical company: The Chemical Company. Its portfolio ranges from chemicals, plastics, performance products and crop protection products to oil and gas. We combine economic success, social responsibility and environmental protection. Through science and innovation we enable our customers in almost all industries to meet the current and future needs of society. Our products and system solutions contribute to conserving resources, ensuring healthy food and nutrition and helping to improve the quality of life. We have summed up this contribution in our corporate purpose: We create chemistry for a sustainable future. BASF posted sales of about EUR 73.5 billion in 2011 and had more than 111,000 employees as of the end of the year. Further information on BASF is available on the Internet at www.basf.com.