How to compost your compostable mailers

How to compost your compostable mailers

So your gorgeous new leggings from Movemetica have arrived, hooray! Before you whip off your clothes and try them on, we want to remind you not to throw away the packaging they came in. Because guess what? That non-assuming little bag is earth-loving and eco-friendly. That means you can compost it and feel even better about your purchase. 

Sure, it may be fun getting one of those fancy-schmancy glossy boxes with your online order, filled with ribbons and tissue paper and packing peanuts galore. It’s like getting a present to unwrap. But all that unnecessary packaging can end up costing the earth. 

At Movemetica, we’re passionate about kicking our world’s plastic problem in the butt. We ship all our products in Heaps Good compostable mailer bags which are certified sustainable packaging. They are made out of 100% corn-based polymers and are tear-resistant (great if you want to reuse them!) Best of all, they break down quickly in home or industrial compost heaps. 

How do I dispose of my Movemetica mailer?

If there is one thing better than a compostable mailer, it’s a mailer that is reused. Before you even think about composting it, check if you can use it for another package. Just remove or cover any shipping labels and pop on some eco-friendly tape to seal it up. You just saved yourself the cost of a new bag and gave this one a second life. Score!

Once your bag has reached the end of its life and you’re ready to return it to the earth, here’s how you can compost it. 

Again, you will need to remove any shipping stickers and tape from your package but that’s it - you’re ready to compost now! If you have a compost bin or heap at home, just pop the bag in alongside your scraps. It will take about 180 days to totally break down into soil. 

If you want to learn how to compost, check out our guide to composting at home with no fancy equipment. It  contains everything you need to know about the simplest way to compost, how to start your own compost heap and where to find a community composting station. Trust us - it’s easier than you think! Check this article we wrote about how to compost!

If you haven’t started composting at home yet, you can find plenty of places around the neighbourhood to drop your mailer bag. Ask a neighbour, find a community garden or talk to the local council. 

If it’s going to decompose anyway, why can’t I just throw it in the bin?

Okay, so you can throw it in the bin and it will eventually decompose but we wouldn’t recommend it. To compost you need all the good stuff like heat, oxygen, moisture and bacteria that just isn’t present in landfill. Without them, the mailer will take a long time to break down, contributing to our landfill problem or worse still, winding up in the ocean. 

By composting your bag, the process of decomposition will happen quickly and safely, plus, you wind up with some nutrient rich soil to spruce up your garden. 

So what are biodegradable mailers? Aren’t they the same thing?

‘Biodegradable’ is one of those sneaky buzzwords that isn't as great as it claims to be. While there are regulations around what can be considered compostable and how long it should take to break down, anyone can slap a biodegradable label on their product.

Biodegradable packaging will decompose eventually but it can take years longer (even hundreds of years!) while releasing deadly greenhouse gases into our atmosphere. Compostable packaging is made from organic composites, so it releases no harmful residues as the materials break down.

A British marine biologist conducted a study which found that a bag labelled biodegradable could survive three years in the ocean. Worse still, once it was removed it could still bear the load of a full bag of groceries. Three years leaves plenty of time for a fish or turtle to swallow that bag. While compostable bags still took some time to break down in the water, it happened a lot quicker than the biodegradable bags or traditional plastics.

Whether you reuse your Movemetica mailer or compost it, we’re proud of you for making the sustainable choice! 

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