Biobased and Sustainability
TePe Oral Health Care continues to take initiatives for long-term sustainable development. Our GOOD products, including a toothbrush, tongue cleaner and mini-flosser are made from bio-based, or sometimes referred to as plant-based, plastic. TePe has been producing high-quality products for over 50 years, and we want to continue this with a focus on sustainability without compromising product safety, quality or hygienic qualities.
What is bio-based or plant-based plastic?
Most plastic is produced from two non-renewable resources – crude oil and natural gas. TePe is moving away from using fossil-based plastics to using a bio-based green polyethylene (PE) plastic. Produced from renewable resources such as sugar cane and castor oil, the GOOD products recirculate as much as 95% C02 emissions through its life cycle, making it next to climate neutral.
Sugar cane was chosen to produce the bio-based plastic material, because it fulfills the critical characteristics, especially its very low carbon footprint. Sugar cane has low waste and has a rapid lifecycle. It takes sugar cane one year to regrow, compared to bamboo which takes several years. Sugar is produced for food, and the by-products are used as fertilizer and lastly to create green polyethylene (bio-based plastic).
Currently, no material is better than plastic in terms of hygiene, safety, durability, moldability, cost-effectiveness, and automated processing. Use of bio-based plastic allows TePe to produce the products in their Swedish manufacturing plant, where they have full control over the supply chain, use renewable energy and can ensure working conditions are fair and safe during the production of their product.
Bio-based polyethylene (plastic) allows TePe to continue to manufacture ergonomic products that can be bent and adjusted to the user’s needs. Bio-based plastic has consistent material properties which is critical in order to comply with the ISO (International Organization for Standardization) standardized quality tests over time.
Plastic has a high resistance to germination of bacteria, as compared to more porous material like bamboo. Why not use recyclable plastic to create products? TePe believes in using plastic that is hygienic and food graded, ensuring no hazardous chemicals. Today, no food graded recycled plastic meets TePe’s requirements on low CO2 impact. TePe products are used in the mouth, and TePe wants to ensure that they are safe for consumers. All TePe products are BPA free, and the TePe GOOD bio-based plastic is food graded.