In the previous article, we talked about the biodegradable plastic food containers which can be decomposed over time in landfills. Besides the eco-food containers, there are edible cup and straw which are not cause the waste as well.
In Japan, “Edible Cup” or “Mogu Cup” was developed by a major Japanese beverage manufacturer and distributor, Asahi Breweries, Ltd. and Marushige, which has experience in producing edible utensils and chopsticks. The raw materials are from potato starch in Japan. Mogu cups started available on the shelf in various stores in November last year. In March 2021 has begun to sell online for general consumers with the sales of approximately 15,000 pieces.
It took about a year to develop this edible cup. The challenge of the Mogu cup is the ability to withstanding water itself. The manufacturer has adjusted the ratio of starch and additives to obtain the products that can maintain their shape when pouring the water inside after using for 1 hour. Moreover, the manufacturer pays attention to the taste, too.
However, the problem with the edible cup is the price. The largest size of Mogu Cup (L) 10 pieces costs 1,400 yen (about 400 baht), while plastic cups 50 pieces are only about 500 yen (about 144 baht), when compare between them, the price of the edible cup is still high.
The Mogu Cup is quite interested in many countries such as England, Germany, United States, etc. It can be said that “Westerners are confident that environmental issues can become a business soon”.
By the way, in Thailand, Kanjanaporn (Siam) Company Limited study, research and do the experiment to get an edible straw which is made from 100% natural ingredients such as rice, corn, cassava and konjac. It looks like a thin transparent tube. As for the properties of the tube, can be soaked in the hot water 35 minutes and it can be soaked in the room temperature or cold water in 6-12 hours. Then, gradually weakens and decomposes in 30 days.
For eating, it must be soaked in water for 3-5 minutes. The straw will be soft and can be eaten. Normally, people use it within 10-15 minutes. So, to use the edible straw, there is no problem for utilizing. This is quite good for environmental friendliness and for health. It will not be soft like a paper straw and no chemical smell but it’s a natural plant scent.
The price of edible straw is set at 1 baht exclude the packaging. On the other hand, the plastic straw’s price is 0.3 baht.
In Thailand, the edible straw has still not popular because the lack of promotion and the price is still high, but the Bio PSB + PLA which is made from sugarcaneand corn is used widespread. It can be decomposed within 180 days via landfill.