• Heather Hellenga

Miniware Selects New Generation of Bioplastics for Eco-Friendly Babyware Line!

Current Miniware product line - photos with the new PLA coming soon!

As the struggle to phase plastics out of the natural grocery industry continues, research and development of new plastic alternatives has flourished and resulted in new, high-quality materials that are now available to manufacturer's such as Miniware. Since its inception, Miniware has believed that creating their products with non-toxic materials is not only paramount to our children's safety, but also the earth's well-being.

Previously, Miniware has focused on bamboo fiber has the primary base for their products, alongside stainless steel and food-grade silicone However, they have made the decision this year to introduce PLA (polylactic acid) as the new primary material for their plates, bowls, and cups.

For the scientist in everyone - polylactic acid refers to bioplastic (or a theromplastic aliphatic polyester), polyester derived from renewable biomass, such as corn or sugarcane. Miniware will be sourcing their PLA from a unique material: cassava root.

The main benefits of this new material have been identified as follows:

1. Renewability

Like bamboo, PLA is made from a renewable resource: cassava root. However, cassava root has lower environmental impact than other PLA materials such as corn due to its quick growing times and ability to grow in a wide range of conditions.

2. No Toxins Required

PLA has far fewer problems than its's plastic relatives when it comes to releasing toxic chemicals into food, which is especially important when creating products intended for children. PLA as a material is generally recognized as safe when used in contact with food, and all of Miniware's products meet the standards of both the FDA and the LFGB.

3. Decompostable and no End-of-Life Secondary Pollution

When exposed to direct sunlight and high humidity, PLA is biodegradable. (It is also recyclable, though programs that would allow it to be recycled are not currently in place.) The material takes a total of 12 months to decompose, far surpassing the rate of traditional plastics (100 years or longer!). PLA also does not leach any heavy metals or harmful toxins into the environment when burning or decomposing.

4. Improved Durability with Plant-Based Materials

Improved durability is one of the primary benefits of PLA in comparison to many of the other plant-based products on the market - such as bamboo and carved wood. PLA is dishwasher-safe and will not break on impact - and important consideration for children's dishes. According to Miniware,

"This strengthened PLA is even more suitable for modern family life than our current bamboo fiber line as it is dishwasher-safe, microwave-safe and much less brittle compared to most plant-based materials."

5. Efficient Production Materials Reduce Cost Finally, PLA is one of the very few plant-based materials that can be produced on a large scale. The process is much faster than other plant-based products, and also has a lower defect rate. Because of the increase in efficiency, the switch to PLA lowers the cost to create Miniware's products, and then those savings can be passed on to consumers.

Miniware believes in promoting a cleaner, healthier, and safer world for children who are now growing up in a time where change is vital - that's why they have chosen to adopt PLA in order to better serve the needs of consumers in the baby industry. The company explains,

"At Miniware, it's important that we're as kind to the earth as we are to our kids... That's the exact reason we think now is the best time to bring strengthened PLA into our family and yours."

In Partnership With

Miniware joined Laura Crawford, Inc. in March 2019. Since then, they have flourished in the market, being chosen by several major natural grocery retailers for the 2019 season. We are excited to see where the PLA takes them.

- Heather Hellenga, President of Laura Crawford, Inc.


Laura Crawford Inc

1 Langdon Street | Suite A

Madison WI 53703