This type of packaging is designed to be environmentally friendly and is usually manufactured from 'Bioplastics' these are essentially a form of plastic derived from sources such as corn starch, soy bean oil and hemp oil, where as your everyday plastic is derived from petroleum.
Bioplastics are regarded as a more sustainable activity, they do not rely as heavily on fossil fuel imports like traditional plastic does and produce far less greenhouse emissions. They produce 0.8 - 3,2 tonnes of carbon dioxide less per tonne than your traditional plastic. The other plus side to Bioplastics is that they are truly 100% biodegradable.
Bioplastics differ from Biodegradable Plastics because the later actually still contains petroleum but are mixed with heavy metals; this eventually causes the plastic to break down over time. The former does not contain any of this and breaks down a lot quicker and is a lot better for the environment.
Europe actually accounts for 60% of biodegradable products in the world, a lot of it being used for packaging, Japan is also a place using these products but for completely different uses, they have infact incorporated it into vehicles and electronics.
This special plastic is especially popular in packaging. It is already commonly used in shopping bags. Some other packaging products they are used for are:
o Containers for fruit
o Bottles for soft drinks
o Blister foils for vegetables and fruit
o Containers for dairy products
o Egg packaging
o Meat packaging
After their initial use they can be reused and then can be composted due to them being Biodegradable.