Compostable and Biodegradable are two common words in the green packaging and circular economies. However, the difference between these two classifications is a common question in the packaging industry nowadays.

While there is established normative that defines what a compostable packaging is, there is not such a norm for biodegradable. This is the reason why these two words are ofently confused.
Compostable means that a packaging can be degraded by microorganisms (i.e. biologically) into CO2, Water and organic mass within a time frame and under established conditions. Biodegradable however encompases not only the compostable ones, but as well all other packaging that may biologically degrade into natural elements, by means of the combination of microorganisms, physical-natural agents (such as sun, sea, etc.) within environmental conditions.
The clear conditions defined in UNE EN ISO 13432 (US ASTM D6400 04) for compostable packaging, leads to the conclusion that all compostable packaging is biodegradable. However, not all biodegradable packaging is compostable.

Both compostable as well as biodegradable packaging are clearly advancing towards a more sustainable packaging solution. Therefore, there is not such a better and worse concept. While compostable has two clearly defined boundaries: time and environment conditions, it requires as well of industrial compostability conditions, which are not frequent outside these plants. Biodegradable on the other hand does not define a clear timeframe for biodegradation but its conditions are ambient conditions, found across the globe.

HEIS biodegradable & compostable packaging is both compostable as well as biodegradable. This makes it compatible with all waste management alternatives. You can find further information in this page and find your suitable packaging here.

At HEIS we would be pleased to give you more information about our biodegradable and compostable packaging solutions. Please do not hesitate to contact us!
With warm regards,
HEIS team