Life cycle assessment of polypropylene meat tray
Nguyen, Doan Trung (2021)
Nguyen, Doan Trung
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Food packaging is a common, daily-use product but plays an important role in the food industry. A life cycle of a plastic meat packaging product could emit a high number of toxic substances to the environment. A life cycle assessment study was conducted in order to evaluate the environmental performance of polypropylene meat tray. The study first set up a benchmark scenario and assessed its environmental impacts. Based on its results, different scenarios were modelled and compared with the benchmark setting to optimize the product’s environmental performance. For the main method, a life cycle assessment was applied following the ISO 14040 series standards. The scope of the study included production of raw material to waste treatment processes. The study concluded that a life cycle of polypropylene meat trays greatly affects global warming potential and abiotic depletion fossil potential. Other processes such as transportation or manufacturing processes only contribute mild impact to the overall environmental performance. The outcome also shows that the end-of-life stage has an important influence on the environmental performance of polypropylene meat trays, especially on the global warming potential. However, the production of raw material dominates the overall results. Based on the scenario modeling, improving product might involve different measures. Transportation distance could be optimized to mainly reduce global warming potential and acidification potential. Alternativemeasures like substituting with a more effective product and increasing recycled waste appear to be more competent as they demand less raw materials, leading to significant reduction in many environmental categories.