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Guayakí Yerba Mate - A Powerful Rainforest Experience

Buzz in the Press
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Buzz in the Press

Buzz in the Press

-- Converting Magazine, 10/1/2008 9:48:00 AM

Guayaki Yerba Mate’s (www.guayaki.com) new San Mateo and Traditional Loose Yerba Mate teas hit store shelves this month in new metallized-cellophane pouches that are being touted as "100% compostable and biodegradable."

The flexible, standup pouches use NatureFlex materials from Tecumseh, KS-based Innovia Films (www.innoviafilms.com). The two-layer bags use a metallized cellophane laminated to a clear cellophane printed with water-based inks. While cellophane films and aluminum foils are not new packaging concepts, the process for producing metallized-cellulose films that are compostable and biodegradable and have the ability to be strong and flexible is unusual. The raw material for NatureFlex is a renewable wood-pulp sourced exclusively from plantations following sustainable forestry principles.

This particular NatureFlex film is reportedly the only metallized, biodegradable film suitable for home composting, Guayaki says, because the level of metal is miniscule (by overall composition less than 0.02% of the bag). The microscopic layer is 1 micron thick. In the decomposition process, the thin coating of aluminum oxidizes and turns into aluminum oxide which is inert and non-toxic.

Tests have shown that the average total time for complete biodegradation of cellulose film is 80 to 120 days for coated cellulose products. NatureFlex films are fully FDA & EU food-approved and certified compostable to the ASTM 6400 and EN-13432 standards.

San Mateo Loose Yerba Mate is a "carbon subtracting" product. This eco-feat is due primarily to the vast carbon sequestration that occurs in the rainforest where Guayaki’s yerba mate is sourced.  Each 16-oz pack of organic, shade-grown and fairly-traded San Mateo Loose Yerba Mate achieves a subtraction of 573 gm of carbon. The independent assessment was performed by Conscious Brands™ (www.consciousbrands.com) in accordance with the www.CarbonLabels.org standard. Growing Guayaki Yerba Mate in the rainforest absorbs 875 gm, while the carbon emissions from processing and transportation are much less: 220 gm processing, 11 gm packaging and 71 gm transportation, the company says.