WorldCentric® products are designed to be composted at commercial composting facilities. These facilities grind the material, turn the compost piles, and monitor conditions to create high temperatures. This reduces the amount of time it takes for products to break down and reduces methane emissions.
Compostable products break down at different rates, depending on the material they are made from and its thickness, as well as the composting conditions. Home composting rates are slower and can vary widely depending on how frequently the pile is turned over, the moisture and material content, and the temperature.
Time Required for Composting World Centric Products
Compostable (PLA) cold cups, deli containers, clamshells, straws, etc.
Compostable (PLA) utensils
Compostable (PLA) food scraps bags and kitchen bags
Up to one year
Fiber plates, take-out containers, bowls, cups and trays
Paper hot cups and bowls
Composting utensils at home is not recommended because of their thickness and strength. Similarly, compostable plastics made from Ingeo PLA are not recommended for home composting.
There are several international organizations that have established standards and testing methods for compostability:
These standards specify the criteria for biodegradation, disintegration and eco-toxicity for a plastic to be called compostable.
Biodegradability is determined by measuring the amount of CO2 produced over a certain time period by the biodegrading plastic. The standards require 60% conversion of carbon into carbon dioxide within 180 days for resins made from single polymer and 90% conversion of carbon into carbon dioxide for co-polymers or polymer mixes.
Disintegration is measured by sieving the material to determine the biodegraded size and less than 10% should remain on a 2mm screen within 120 days.
Eco toxicity is measured by having concentrations of heavy metals below the limits set by the standards and by testing plant growth by mixing the compost with soil in different concentrations and comparing it with controlled compost.
Many of our products are certified compostable by the Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI), which uses the ASTM standards to test that products break down quickly and safely. Our compostable bags are also TÜV AUSTRIA certified.
To learn more about our compostability certifications, visit our certifications page.
Read more on Earth Matters about the circular economy of compostable products. For a template letter advocating for commercial composting in your area, click here.