Expanded polystyrene, also known as technopor, takes about 500 years to degrade, and this is why Peru seeks to replace these containers with new ones made of sugar cane.
Because it takes so long to degrade, technopor increases contamination, when as for sugar cane containers don’t contain chemicals and they are biodegradable.
Rayda Romero, the founder of Qapac Runa, told Andina News Agency that sugar cane containers are made of the bagasse of the cane, which is what is left after the cane is used for extracting sugar.
The bagasse “used to be discarded by burning it”, Romero said, “now, it is cleaned and treated with very high temperatures to turn it into paper rolls”, she continued, adding that they can be shaped into any desired form, such as plates, containers with closing lids, cups, and bowls.Another positive aspect for the sugar cane containers is that they can be used in both in the convection and microwave ovens. They can also be washed and reused as many times as you want.
Currently, there are already 200 companies in Peru that are using these biodegradable containers with the goal of reducing contamination.