AS 5810:2010 – Biodegradable plastics—Biodegradable plastics suitable for home composting.
4.1 Equivalent form
A plastic demonstrated to he ‘home compostable’ in a particular form shall be accepted as being home compostable in any other form having the same or a smaller mass-to-surface ratio or wall thickness.
I For a plastic of equivalent form that has been accepted using a higher thickness or mass to surface area ratio, no further testing is required.
2 For a plastic of equivalent form that has been accepted using a lower thickness or mass to surface area ratio, further testing is required only for the assessment of disintegration.
4.2 Different components
In the case of a plastic product formed from different components, some of which are compostable and some others not, the product itself, as a whole shall not be designated ‘home compostable’. however, if the components can be separated by hand before disposal, the compostable components may be effectively considered and treated as such, once separated from the non-compostable components.
NOTE: The user should report whether the plastic product (i.e. test material) is a single (i.e. monocomponent) product or an assembly (i.e. multicomponent) product. if it is to be tested as a single plastic material then any attached components (e.g. adhesive labels, caps/closures) likely to be separated by a user at the end of the product’s life, are to be first physically separated. If the product is a multicomponent product (e.g. nappy) then the entire assembly should be tested.
4.3 Conditions prior to entering a home composting process
The following should be considered in advance of the market release of plastic intended for entering a home compost system:
(a) The fulfillment of the quality criteria for compost input material alone will not necessarily lead to the production of quality compost.
(b) The contents filled into a compostable plastic container that remains in parts or as a whole in the plastic container after the normal use should he home compostable and neither toxic nor hazardous.
(c) If the shape of the plastic component is a hollow body, it should not he closed and should preferably be empty.
5.1 Designation
The plastic product or plastic component shall only be designated as horne compostable’ if
all the criteria set out in this Clause 5 are met.
5.2 Assessment
Assessment of plastics shall include the following four procedures, which are covered in
Clauses 5.3 to 5.6:
(a) Characterization.
(b) Biodegradability.
(c) Disintegration.
(d) Compost quality (including toxicity).
i.3 Characterization
5.3.1 Geneicil
Characterization is the determination of the constituents of plastics. This is important because some constituents can be harmful to the environment.
5.3.2 Criteria
Each plastic under investigation shall be identified and characterized prior to testing as fo 110w s:
(a) The information about and identification of each component of the plastic (e.g. thickness) shall he determined or obtained, and recorded.
(b) The volatile solids content of the plastic shall be determined and recorded. The plastic shall maintain a minimum of 50% of volatile solids.
(c) The presence of heavy metals and other toxic and hazardous substances shall be determined and recorded. The concentration of any constituent present in a plastic shall not exceed the value given in Table I.
(d) The organic carbon content and total dry solids of the plastic shall be determined and recorded.
(e) The thickness of the plastic shall be determined and recorded.
(fl The colour constituents of the plastic shall be determined and recorded.
NOTE: Colourants can affect the outcomes of test, in particular, ecotoxicity.