World Oceans Day

world oceans day 2world oceans day 1As part of World Oceans Day, numerous companies and organisations have used their media influence to raise awareness about the damage we’re doing to our ecosystem and oceans.

The display in these images (spotted locally) was organised by Corona, it is a visual depiction of the average quantity of waste found over a 2 mile stretch of beach in the UK. As you can see, much of this waste is plastic based which can be hugely harmful to wildlife.

As an ethical supplier of catering disposables, much of which is plastic based, we’re always very keen to promote the sustainable usage and correct disposal of our products. We supply large quantities of plastic glasses for events all over the UK; the vast majority of our items are either recyclable or biodegradable.  Any large consumers of disposable items should always have a plan in mind to manage their waste; normally this would involve collecting the used glasses and sorting for recycling. There’s no need for items of this nature to be disposed of with regular waste and sent to landfill. We certainly don’t want to see products dumped into the oceans where they take hundreds of years to break down.

Whether you’re catering a small private party, or a large festival for hundreds of thousands of guests – we’re always happy to advise on the most ethical ways to dispose and manage any waste created. The most effective way to do your part for the oceans is to ensure your waste doesn’t end up there in the future.

World Oceans Day: http://www.worldoceansday.org/

Recycled Plastics?

500ml-plastic-water-bottle-500x500A common theme in 2018 so far seems to revolve around eliminating our dependency on single use disposables and plastics.  Often this seems to be done at a policy maker’s level without enough thought as to the implementation.

We’ve written several articles promoting the benefits of correct sortation and recycling of disposables. Rather than the blanket “ban x product from the shelf” style statements that seem so commonplace, we could drastically reduce the amount of plastics that end up in landfill by simply improving sortation and recycling facilities to allow the waste to be processed.

It’s true that our reliance on disposables can be reduced to some extent, but there will always be a demand for the items (hygiene grounds within the NHS for example). Nearly all plastics are easily processed if sent to the correct facility without contamination.

Evian is an example of a company investing in better recycling facilities and looking to promote a more sustainable use of plastics, bottles in this instance. Their aim is for all plastic bottles to be made from recycled plastics by 2020. Evian is working with governments and waste processors to secure a sufficient supply of recycled plastics to accomplish this. More details at: https://news.nationalgeographic.com/2018/04/sponsor-content-changing-the-way-we-think-about-plastics/

Hopefully other similar companies will follow suit and get behind plastic recycling schemes.

Recycled plastics used to make “plastic roads”?

thisroadismadefromwasteplasticsWith all the negativity circulating regarding the country’s failure to correctly sort, process and recycle plastic waste, it’s good to see some progress and innovation in the recycling world. It’s no secret that plastic waste (especially from food packaging, plastic cups, bottles etc) is a huge issue worldwide. These plastics are commonly not recycled and end up in landfill; they will then often take hundreds of years to break down.

In 2015 a scheme was trialled where plastic waste was used instead of crude oil to form the bitumen used for paving roads (see https://newatlas.com/vancouver-recycled-plastic-warm-mix-asphalt/25254/). There are numerous benefits to repurposing plastic waste in this manner, not least of which is the potential to vastly reduce plastic waste sent to landfill. Other benefits of this scheme include:

  • Reduced pollution; where plastics would have been potentially been incinerated.
  • Ease of recycling; bitumen can be made from Thermosets, Elastomers and Thermoplastics meaning reduced reliance on complex sorting.
  • Less dependence on crude oil traditionally used in road construction.
  • Plastics can be used to create a more flexible and hard-wearing surface, resistant to breakage and temperature related damage.

In Vancouver there is already widespread use of this process (https://thinkprogress.org/netherlands-company-introduces-plastic-roads-that-are-more-durable-climate-friendly-than-asphalt-ecb7c2a11a50/), even to the extent that modular premade blocks are used.

The only barrier to using waste plastics in this manner is the current lack of scalable infrastructure to collect and sort the waste plastics. With the correct investment and increase awareness of new recycling opportunities we could drastically cut the amount of plastic waste ending up in landfill.

Currently the UK seems more fixated on eliminating the usage of single-use plastics across the board, however this is a rather optimistic and short sighted goal. The simple fact of the matter is that single use plastics like plastic cups are often a necessity. Wouldn’t it be better all round to tackle the real issue here, which is the lack of correct waste collection, recycling and sortation facilities? With increased awareness, subsidies and incentives there’s enormous potential for progress.

Branded Paper Cups

printed paper cupsDid you know that we can brand / custom print any design you like on our paper cups? We stock a variety of off-the-shelf prints and plain designs for our disposable cups, but for larger quantities we’re able to print your logo or other artwork on a customised cup.

Custom print runs start from as little as 10,000 units (as few as 10 cases of cups), no need to commit to huge quantities. In addition to having your own bespoke artwork on the cup, you can also mix and match attributes to create a cup combination we don’t supply as a stock line. For example we could produce a 4oz double wall biodegradable paper cup if required. Cups are available in the following types:

Cup size; 4oz, 6oz, 8oz, 10oz, 12oz, 12oz squat, 16oz, 20oz

Insulation types; single wall, double wall, ripple, ultimate / triple later

Lining; PE, PLA (biodegradable)

Generally, custom prints take between 12-14 weeks from the point of artwork approval. Once they arrive, we ship these out to your chosen delivery location in a single consignment. There’s no additional delivery charge for this, the price on the custom printed page is the price you pay – no additional origination fees.

You can find a full selection of blank templates on our site if you want to complete your own artwork, these are at: https://innsupplies.com/custom-printed-templates

The full range of printed paper cups are available at: https://innsupplies.com/printed

 

Single-use plastic waste and the NHS

recyclebinAs you’ve no doubt noticed, disposables and single-use plastics are very much in the media spotlight at the moment. Much of this started after the airing of David Attenborough’s Blue Planet 2 in late 2017. This highlighted the environmental impact of plastics / microplastics and waste dumping on our oceans and their associated inhabitants.

Above all the series got people thinking about where their packaging goes after disposal. The public has started to question when they choose to use disposables and ask how the material is handled after we’ve finished with it. This has in-turn put pressure on high profile volume users of disposables to look at the way they handle their disposable waste.

In the news today are the results of an investigation into plastic use within the NHS (https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/nhs-guilty-binning-staggering-120-12338192). To summarise the report, the plastic waste originating from within the NHS is being disposed of with the regular waste collection. Plastic cups and disposables have their place; in the NHS they represent a sanitary and hygienic option for patients, the issue here is the mishandling of disposable products rather than the specific use of single-use plastics.

Oil based plastics are an easily recyclable commodity, almost without exception. With simple sorting and an appropriate plastic collection the large amount of plastic cups the NHS uses (334,000 per day according to this report) would be recycled and the landfill issue avoided.

We are always keen to encourage the ethical use of disposable plastics, in fact we frequently advise customers on the matter. The media coverage this report will bring should at least be a catalyst for change within the NHS, there is little excuse for not sorting plastic waste and sending it for recycling – recycling facilities are available nationwide and collection schemes widespread.

 

Product Clearance: Silver Plastic Spoons

silver plastic spoonsWe’re currently clearing residual stock of our disposable silver cutlery, most of these have already sold but we do have a quantity of the silver spoons remaining. As such these are now listed at a clearance price of only 50p per pack (10 units per pack).

These won’t last long at this price, less than half the original retail price of the items. Once these are sold the item will be discontinued – we’ll have no further stock of this range.

You can find these on our site at: https://innsupplies.com/plastic-silver-spoon.html

Easter opening hours

580b57fcd9996e24bc43c3c7Due to the Easter break our office is closed from Good Friday (30th March) this week, we reopen after the bank holiday on Tuesday 3rd April. If you need any items delivering before Easter then the deadline is Wednesday 28th March (1pm). We recommend getting your orders in as early as possible to avoid disappointment. Orders placed after 1pm on Wednesday will be dispatched on Thursday and delivered after the bank holiday.

Orders can be processed as normal via our website, you can also give our sales team a call on 0844 4995456 to place an order or for any other queries you may have.

 

Catering Supplies – Going Biodegradable?

soup-containers-groupAt Inn Supplies we’ve always stocked a wide range of specific biodegradable products or compostable alternatives to traditional items. Over the past year we’ve worked hard at expanding this range, there’s now more choice than ever before for customers that specifically require biodegradable items.

Moving towards biodegradable alternatives is a topic that has attracted huge media focus over the past 6 months in particular, the aim being to reduce landfill waste and litter from discarded packaging.

Our range of compostable and biodegradable catering products currently includes the following:

  • Round Biodegradable Plates
  • Square Biodegradable Plates
  • Biodegradable Bowls
  • Biodegradable Food Boxes
  • Biodegradable Paper Cups
  • Biodegradable Soup Cups
  • Biodegradable Plastic Cutlery

In addition to these, many other items from our catalogue are inherently biodegradable due to being made from 100% recycled paper:

  • Paper Tablecloths
  • Paper Napkins
  • Cup Sleeves

Products can be classed as biodegradable for several reasons, for our range this boils down to:

  • Made from 100% paper; this will degradable naturally and completely as it contains no other additives or coating.
  • Produced from an alternative material that doesn’t require a coating. Sugarcane / Bagasse is a good example of this. These are made from sugarcane pulp which is 100% biodegradable.
  • Featuring a coating that is designed to be biodegradable / compostable. Our biodegradable paper cups use a PLA corn starch coating instead of the more common Polyethylene plastic coating.
  • Items using an additive. Our biodegradable cutlery uses an additive called Addiflex which makes the plastic compostable.

As an ethical supplier of catering disposables we’re always keen to offer environmentally friendly options to customers. We also have a strict policy for sourcing disposables than are ethically produced and from sustainable resources.

You can find our full range of biodegradable disposables at: https://innsupplies.com/biodegradable

Our team are also happy to offer advice on our biodegradable items, simply get in touch for more information.

Reusable Plastic Glasses and Barware

hiball plastic glassesWe’ve got a huge range of disposable paper and plastic products for most occasions; however we also stock an extensive range of hard plastic reusable items. There are several reasons why you might want to consider a reusable plastic product over a cheaper disposable alternative, such as:

  • Strength
    If you’re catering for a function that specifically requires more substantial glasses, our hard plastic reusable tumblers might be preferable.
  • Potential reuse
    This needs to be calculated on a case-by-case basis, but if it’s possible that the glasses might be reused there’s a point where it becomes more economical to use a reusable glass over a disposable type.
  • Specific style of glass
    Unfortunately not all glass shapes are possible or commonly available in disposable plastic. This can be for a variety of reasons, often because the shape would potentially be too weak for a disposable glass and too prone to breakage. Reusable glasses are available in a much wider variety of styles and have huge inherent strength.
  • Commercial use
    This is the most common reason for using a hard plastic reusable glass; commercial venues are often required to offer an alternative to glassware for after-hours or outdoor usage. This can be a council licencing stipulation, these are rigidly enforced for safety reasons. Polycarbonate reusable glasses are virtually unbreakable making them much safer than glassware in pubs, bars and clubs.

We stock reusable plastic glasses in 2 main material types. A standard hard plastic ‘light use’ type (ECON) which is made from crystal Polystyrene, and a harder plastic virtually unbreakable type (ELITE) made from Polycarbonate. The most suitable type is completely dependent on the intended usage; Polycarbonate glasses tend to be the go-to choice for commercial environments, however Polystyrene glasses are more popular for home or occasional usage. For all intents and purposes they look very similar; the Polycarbonate glasses are thicker and heavier however.

You can find the full reusable barware range reusable plastic glasses on our site at: https://innsupplies.com/reusable

reusable plastic barware

New Premium Polycarbonate Plastic Goblets

157-1CL NS We’ve just launched a new line of polycarbonate plastic goblets, designed to be similar to the Birra Moretti pint glasses and the traditional Stella Artois Chalice. In addition to the usual 20oz / 568ml reusable pint glasses we’re also stocking a 10oz (half pint) and 15oz version in the same style.

These are made from virtually unbreakable Polycarbonate plastic, great for outdoor or after hours use at pubs / bars. The glasses cannot be broken and used to cause harm making them much safer than glassware. Polycarbonate is especially durable so can be reused continually; these are tested to 500 cycles in the glass washer without degradation. We also stock a rinse aid and polycarbonate-specific detergent to further prolong the life of these and keep them looking great for front of house use.

You can find our range of Polycarbonate Tumblers at: https://innsupplies.com/reusable/plastic-tumblers