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Is PVA bad for the environment?

Posted on August 03 2021

Laundry sheet and pods are being marketed as a zero-plastic option to those that are eager to get rid of plastic in our lives. We did some investigating because we thought, "wow! we should do that!". So we looked into what it would take to get our awesome product onto a biodegradable sheet or dissolvable pod. Once we saw how those were made, we passed on the idea.  Here is why: 

PVA or PVOH or PVAL stands for polyvinyl alcohol. The first thing we wanted to know about PVA is what IS it? According to Brittanica.com, "a colorless, water-soluble synthetic resin employed principally in the treating of textiles and paper." Synthetic resins are not clearly differentiated from plastics. It's like a plastic in the sense that it is bendy and pliable. But it's not like a plastic in that DISSOLVES. 

Notice I didn't say "biodegrades"? That's because even scientists don't know if it biodegrades. It certainly dissolves, but how long does it take to biodegrade? No one has that answer yet. 

We found an article by The Royal Society that even classified PVA as a micro-plastic. Read the article here

So after much research, we concluded that we would not be developing anything with PVA because A) it's a synthetic substance and B) it's not recyclable. You can get our synthetic-free MamaSuds Laundry Soap in a recyclable jug on our website. 

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