In our interviews, one of the most surprising things is when we name examples of everyday objects made out of, also, plastic.

Here are some of these objects you would never expect to have it. Surely more than one will surprise you:

1. CHEWING GUM: The fundamental ingredient of chewing gums is the gum base, which gives them their characteristic chewiness. Until relatively recently, it was made of chicle, a natural gummy latex-sap of a tropical tree, sapodilla (Manilkara zapota). Since the 1960s, although its composition is like the secret of the Coca-Cola since the quality of the gum depends largely on this formula, most replaced “chicle” by butadiene-based or polyvinyl acetate synthetic rubber or other petroleum waxes.

Solution: Choose, always with moderation, natural sweets, dried sticks of liquorice root, or biodegradable natural latex chewing gums.

2. CHEESE: In addition to all wrapping, tubs, or aluminum foil used to present us this dairy product, more and more cheeses replace natural bark by an artificial plastic cover, usually paraffin or plastic paint which, in most cases, have been treated with chemical anti-moulds.

Solution: Pay attention when reading the label because it is mandatory to include the use of these substances in them. However, it is better if you choose organic products.

3. TEA BAGS: It is most likely you never have questioned the safety of tea bags, and other types of infusions increasingly in vogue. However, some of the newest bags, pyramid-shaped for example, are made of a variety of plastics including nylon, PVC or polypropylene. Traditional paper bags are not ideal either, as they are often treated with additives used in plastic.

Solution: Use loose teas, along with ceramic or stainless steel strainers, not only because they taste much better but also because they are cheaper.

4. BALLOONS: Although they were originally made of natural rubber, currently, they mainly use synthetic rubber or aluminized plastic. Even natural latex balloons are not anymore “biodegradable”, since they can take up to four years to decompose after adding plasticizers and artificial colourants.

Solution: Balloons are not the only thing to decorate with. There are many safe, fun, and eye-catching alternatives to balloons for parties, memorials, fundraisers, and more! Many can be made at home and are great activities for kids.

We hope you have been somewhat taken aback by these examples, and are able from now on to see these objects from a new point of view.