The Great Plastic Debate

It all started with a post on the biology of food decay and how to prevent it. The answer is (mostly) to wrap food in plastic. This is not a popular thing to say given the ‘Blue Planet effect’, but people were interested, so I carried on looking into it. All my blog posts on plastic are linked below in chronological order.

Why does fresh food go off? This is where I started, with some basic biology of transpiration, respiration and food decay, and how it can be prevented with packaging. February 2018.

Where does all the marine plastic come from and what should we do about it? The ‘Blue Planet’ effect had generated so much interest in marine plastic that I decided to do some literature research to see what evidence there was on where it was ocming from. February 2018.

In praise of plastic Where food packaging is needed to prevent decay or for containment (e.g. of liquids), what should the packaging be made from? My most well read blog post, by a long way. March 2018.

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch A discussion of how plastic moves around in the oceans. March 2018.

On why we should continue to eat food wrapped in plastic A long post, looking at the environmental impacts of food compared to what it’s packaged in. May 2018.

If you’re worried about microplastics in the ocean, you should stop driving your car. A short one, gently pointing out how daft it is to blame cosmetics manufacturers for microbeads whilst ignoring one of our favourite environmental blindspots (vehicle use). October 2018. 

Recycling and climate change. Why every little doesn’t help. I got fed up of the emphasis people seem to put on recycling compared to more important environmental actions, so this is a short post with a simple piechart. Because we like pie. September 2019.

Plastic and food packaging, the 2020 update. A post on what has and hasn’t changed in the two years since I first blogged about plastic. February 2020.


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