Marine Debris Garbage Bags

Itochu (Tokyo) — Itochu Corporation has announced that it and Sanipak Company Of Japan, Ltd., its subsidiary and Japan’s largest garbage bag maker, have developed the world’s first garbage bag including raw materials made from marine debris.

In recent years, the problem of marine debris has been attracting attention In Japan and abroad, and countermeasures are urgently needed. It is estimated that some 20,000 cubic meters of marine debris per year are washed ashore on the coastline of the island of Tsushima, Nagasaki Prefecture, considered the island that has the largest volume of marine debris in Japan. Hundreds of millions of yen are spent every year to collect the debris, and it is impossible to collect it all. It is a serious social issue. Some of the collected marine plastic waste is recycled into oil, but much of it is deposited in landfills. Tsushima city is working to facilitate the recycled use of marine plastic debris as a city of the future focused on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Sanipak Japan, leveraging the knowledge and technology it possesses as Japan’s largest garbage bag maker, has developed the world’s first garbage bag made in part with raw materials made from marine debris.

Itochu and Sanipak Japan plan to provide some of these new garbage bags free of charge to Tsushima city and other areas that need garbage cleaning activities on their coastlines, and will establish a recycling economy-oriented business model to resolve the problem of marine debris that society faces. It is hoped that this activity, which also raises awareness of marine debris, will lead to the reduction of marine debris and a reduction of the disposal expenses of Tsushima city.

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