Worried that that land use for bioplastics feedstocks competes directly with feed and food crops? No need, says European Bioplastics in its recently published booklet “Bioplastics: facts and figures”. Out of a total global agricultural area of 5 billion hectares, around 300,000 hectares are used to grow feedstocks for bioplastics: in other words, 0.006%. Metaphorically speaking, this ratio correlates to the size of an average cherry tomato placed next to the Eiffel Tower.
The statistics released by European Bioplastics in the brochure are based on figures from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and calculations of the Institute for Bioplastics and Biocomposites (IfBB, University of Applied Sciences and Arts; Hannover, Germany).
In a world of fast-growing population with an increasing demand for food and feed, the use of feedstock for non-food purposes is controversial and often a subject of intense debate. This new brochure can help defuse this issue, by moving the discussion onto a factual level.