Q: Can you elaborate on the photo-degradability of Stone Paper?
A: As previously mentioned, our paper is photodegradable, not biodegradable.
Under the notion of biodegradability, substances can take up-to 20 years to decompose by bacteria or other living organisms.
In the eyes of the Federal Trade Commission, FTC, if something is biodegradable it must break down to elements of nature in one year using customary disposal methods. In the US, customary disposal of solid materials means a landfill, an incinerator, or a recycling facility. Not a composting facility. Not your backyard garden.
The notion of biodegradability doesn't apply to our product since the main element of the substance is calcium carbonate (CaCO3). This substance is already a natural element of earth which in plain language could be considered as already "decomposed". Therefore the only content of Stone Paper which needs to be broken down is the low level HDPE.
In all, our stone paper would actually qualify more to be a "biodegradable" material in the eyes of the FTC than other products, Even though its structure and composition are not even applicable.
As it was indicated previously, HDPE is not naturally biodegradable since its molecular structure needs to break down with the intensity of natural UV light. Therefore since natural UV light (with or without sunlight) is always present it automatically penetrates the loose pile of landfill and therefore makes its effect onto the HDPE component of the paper in landfill environment.
Please note the photo degradability for the purpose of our discussion is relevant to landfill.
For instance, stone paper sitting on an office desk by the window doesn't decompose since it's not in a "landfill environment".