In today’s world, packaging is often looked at as wasteful, largely because the packaging usually outlives the products that they protect. But packaging is extremely important. It provides protection to keep products safe in transport and on shelves as well as information for consumers to make the right purchasing decision. With that said, researchers realize the importance of packaging while taking environmental concerns into consideration in an effort to source sustainable materials that can be used for packaging. We’ve blogged about many of them. Recently, coconuts have been tested for different packaging applications. Others include algae-based plastics, sugarcane plastics, mushroom stems, and the list goes on.
Now the newest development in eco-friendly packaging material is banana leaves (at least until we run across something else….maybe next week). Israeli designer named Tal Marco has taken a decidedly low-tech and refreshing approach to package design with his use of natural banana leaves which are an abundant resource in many regions around the world. Their wax-like surface is ideal for food packaging specifically because they work well with wet and greasy foods. However, the leaves are very flexible and can last a long time after being cut from banana trees. Therefore, they can be adapted to many types of packaging.
These banana leaf packages that are pictured are cut to form using die cutting technology. Die cut leaves can be folded into numerous forms lending themselves to many retail applications. No glue is used. The unique qualities of this material allow packages to be opened simply by tearing the banana leaf along its natural perforation.