Biodegradable plastics and products degradation performance and labeling requirements

Biodegradable plastics and products degradation performance and labeling requirements

Time:2021-12-3

On November 26, 2021, the State Administration for Market Regulation/National Standardization Administration issued GB/T 41010-2021 “Degradability and Labeling Requirements for Biodegradable Plastics and Products”, which will be officially implemented on June 1, 2022 .

The issuance and implementation of this standard will help guide and regulate the processing, production, use, sales and application of biodegradable plastics and products, and solve the problems of how to distinguish the authenticity of biodegradable plastic products and how to quickly identify them.

Plastic pollution control is conducive to the sustainable development of green and the construction of a beautiful China. The formulation of this standard will help improve the standardization of plastic pollution control, so as to promote the development of the biodegradable product industry standard, and give full play to standards to support plastic pollution control. Positive effect.

Standard setting background

The global production capacity of biodegradable plastics is approximately 1.3 million tons, with a compound annual growth rate of more than 20%. Polylactic acid (PLA), polybutylene adipate terephthalate (PBAT), polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA), The production scale of biodegradable materials such as polypropylene carbonate (PPC) has gradually realized industrial production, and has begun to be applied in the fields of daily necessities such as fibers, daily-use film bags, and agricultural mulching films.

Chinese biodegradable plastics are developing rapidly, with a production capacity of nearly 500,000 tons. Products have been used in municipal solid waste classification, retail establishments, restaurants, e-commerce, postal express mail, and takeaway packaging.

At present, many products in the market are printed or labeled as biodegradable. On the various plastics marked with “degradable” in the market, how to distinguish whether they are genuine biodegradable plastic products and how to identify them has become an urgent issue for production, sales, use, and supervision.

GB/T 41010-2021 “Biodegradable Plastics and Products Degradability and Labeling Requirements” national standard, focusing on the production, use and supervision requirements of biodegradable plastic products, combining the characteristics of biodegradable plastics and products, and making full use of relevant international and foreign organizations and national laws and regulations And the standards provide terms and definitions such as biodegradation and biodegradation rate, and stipulate requirements for degradation performance, labeling requirements and inspection methods.

The main content of the standard

The national standard GB/T 41010-2021 “Degradability and Labeling Requirements for Biodegradable Plastics and Products” regulates terms and definitions such as biodegradation and biodegradability, and specifies requirements for degradation performance, labeling requirements and inspection methods. The standard applies to products processed from various biodegradable materials such as natural polymer materials, synthetic polymers, and materials containing additives such as plasticizers, pigments or other compounds.

The following is an excerpt of the main content of the standard text on degradation performance requirements, degradation performance inspection method selection, labeling, labeling requirements, etc.:

1. Degradation performance requirements

1.1 Organic content (volatile solid content)

The organic content (volatile solid content) of biodegradable plastics and products should be greater than or equal to 51%.

1.2 Chemical properties

1.2.1 Heavy metals and specific element content limits

The chemical properties mainly stipulate the content limit requirements of heavy metals and specific elements, and the specific requirements are shown in Table 1.

Heavy metals and specific elementsLimit (net weight) mg/kg
As≤5
Cd≤0.5
Co≤38
Cr≤50
Cu≤50
F≤100
Hg≤0.5
Ni≤25
Mo≤1
Pb≤50
Se≤0.75
Zn≤150
Table 1
Heavy metal and specific element content limit requirements

1.2.2 Substances of Very High Concern

All materials used should comply with the national laws and regulations on products or prohibited dangerous substances in certain fields, especially those classified as carcinogenic, genetic mutation, reproductive toxicity, and allergic substances should be highly concerned.

Substances of very high concern shall meet the requirements of GB/T 39498, and the manufacturer shall provide relevant evidence such as self-declaration.

1.3 Biodegradability

The biodegradation rate should meet the following requirements:

a) The relative biodegradation rate should be greater than or equal to 90%, and the absolute biodegradation rate of a single organic component with a component greater than or equal to 1% in the material should be greater than or equal to 60%;

b) If the biodegradable plastic and the product are composed of a mixture or a composite of multiple materials, the organic components with a component of less than 1% should also be biodegradable, but proof of ability is not required, and the total amount of each component with a component of less than 1% Should be less than 5%.

1.4 Disintegration rate

For biodegradable plastics and products that are claimed to be industrially compostable, high-solid anaerobic digestion, household composting, etc., the disintegration rate should be greater than or equal to 90%.

1.5 Ecotoxicity test of degradation products

1.5.1 Phytotoxicity test of degradation products

If required, the germination rate of the phytotoxicity test of the degradation products of biodegradable plastics and products should be greater than or equal to 90%, and the weight of the sample degradation products after drying for 3 hours at 105°C and the weight of the blank group of plants after drying The percentage should be greater than or equal to 90%.

1.5.2 Pass rate of degradation product earthworm test

If required, the earthworm test survival rate of the degradation products of biodegradable plastics and products should be greater than or equal to 90%, and the weight ratio of the surviving earthworms to the initial test earthworms should be greater than or equal to 90%.

2. Degradation performance inspection method selection

The content of organic components (volatile solids) is tested according to method A in GB/T 9345.1-2008, and the test temperature is 650°C.

The degradation environmental conditions mainly include freshwater environment, composting, soil, marine environment, anaerobic digestion of sludge, and high-solid anaerobic digestion. The label of degradation performance should be labelled according to the degradation environmental conditions, and the corresponding inspection method should be selected according to Table 2.

3. Mark

3.1 Text mark

The text identification of biodegradable plastics and products should include the following:

a) Material;

b) Degrading environmental conditions;

c) According to the product standard or degradation test method standard and product name.

3.2 Graphic mark

a material

b. Degradation environmental conditions, which can include:

——Soil degradable;

—— Compostable and degradable;

——Degradation of marine environment;

——Degradation of freshwater environment;

——Anaerobic digestion of sludge;

——High-solid anaerobic digestion.

c Product standard number

d Product name

3.3 Marking specifications

The appropriate size of the label should be determined according to the size of the product. If the label needs to be reduced or enlarged, the proportion given in the label should be reduced or enlarged equally. Refer to Appendix A for the labeling style specifications of biodegradable plastics and products.

3.4 Conditions of use of the logo

The degradation performance of biodegradable plastics and products marked with a biodegradable label shall comply with the provisions of Chapter 4.

The degradation conditions in the biodegradation label can be one or more of the conditions specified in this document, and the degradation performance under each degradation condition marked should have a corresponding inspection certificate or other compliance certificate.

4. Marking requirements

4.1 product material identification

4.1.1 Single component product

The product is made from a single polymer and is marked as specified in Chapter 6. See Table 3 for the names of biodegradable polymers and their abbreviations in English.

Polymer nameabbreviation
starchSt
CelluloseCA
Polylactic acidPLA
PolycaprolactonePCL
Polybutylene adipatePBSA
Polybutylene terephthalate adipatePBAT
Polyhydroxybutyrate/valeratePHBV
Poly 3-hydroxybutyrate/4-hydroxybutyrateP(3HB,4HB)
PolydioxanonePPDO
Polybutylene succinatePBS
Polyglycolic acidPGA
Polypropylene carbonate, or carbon dioxide/propylene oxide copolymerPPC
Carbon dioxide/ethylene oxide copolymerPEC
Poly-3-hydroxybutyratePHB
Polyglycolic acidPGA
Polybutylene terephthalate succinatePBST
Other biodegradable polymersAppropriate abbreviations
Table 3   Examples of abbreviations for the names and mark of biodegradable polymers

4.1.2 “Multi-component products

Multi-component products of polymer mixtures or alloys should be arranged according to the mass percentages of various main components in order from largest to smallest. The abbreviations are used to indicate the components of the polymer, and the abbreviations are separated by a plus sign “+”. Open, and mark according to the “6 Marking” regulations.

Example:

Polycaprolactone and starch alloy, polycaprolactone is the main polymer, starch is dispersed in it, expressed as:

PCL+St

4.1.3 “Products containing additives (optional)

For products containing a single filler or reinforcing agent, the filler or reinforcing agent should be marked together with the polymer, with a hyphen after the abbreviation of the polymer, and then describe the additive according to the abbreviation specified in GB/T 1844.2.

Example 1:

Add 30% by mass of polycaprolactone mineral powder (calcium carbonate), expressed as:

>PCL-MD 30 or PCL-CaCO3 30<

For products containing multiple fillers or multiple reinforcing agents or both, the percentage content of fillers or reinforcing agents shall be described in accordance with the provisions of Examples 2 and 3, and parentheses shall be used to enclose them.

Example 2:

Polylactic acid containing 15% by mass of mineral powder (calcium carbonate) and 25% by mass of glass fiber, expressed as:

>PLA-(GF25+MD15)< or >PLA-(GF+MD)40<

Example 3:

By the polylactic acid containing 20% ​​by mass of mineral powder (MD) and 15% by mass of glass fiber (GF), it is expressed as:

>PLA-(MD20+GF15)< or >PLA-(MD+GF)35<

4.2 Mark position

When the product is used, it should be marked on the product or outer packaging.

The label should be marked on the product body, such as the bottom, outside and other obvious parts. If it cannot be marked on the obvious part due to the influence of function, appearance design, etc., it shall be marked on the outer packaging of the product. At the same time, it should be noted in the product manual.

4.3 Identification color

The marking color is mainly green (color number: R73 G106 B1); when the product is inconvenient to use green color, you can choose the appropriate color according to the product (mainly black and white), or use the natural color of the product when marking by molding, branding, etc. .

4.4 Identification marking method

The marking of the logo can be made by molding, printing, embossing, branding, or other clear and difficult-to-erasable marking methods.

The logo should be clearly visible, not easy to wear, and should not impair the performance of the product.

4.5 Biodegradable plastic and product name

The names of biodegradable plastics and products in the label, if there is a product national standard or industry standard that has been issued and implemented, shall be named according to the product national standard or industry standard. If there is no corresponding product national or industry standard, refer to the product national standard or industry standard that has been issued and implemented for naming. Refer to Appendix B for national standards or industry standards for related products.

Biodegradable plastics and products degradation performance and labeling requirements

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