Plastic bag closures, the plastic hook-like piece commonly used to hold bread products closed, are widely used across the world in countries like the United States, Canada, Ireland, Australia and Japan. “They are also commonly called bread tags, bread tabs, bread ties, bread clips or bread-bag clips”.
“According to the Kwik Lok website, the idea for the bread clip came to Floyd Paxton, Kwik Lok’s founder, during a flight in 1952….while he was on the plane, Paxton was eating a package of complimentary nuts, and he realized he didn’t have a way to close them if he wanted to save some for later. As a solution, he took out a pen knife and hand-carved the first bread clip out of a credit card”.
“Most bread clips are composed of plastic #6 polystyrene (PS). Most people are familiar with polystyrene in foam form (Styrofoam), but it’s also used to make rigid items such as CD cases, disposable kitchenware, and bread tags. Rigid polystyrene can be recycled, but it’s not commonly accepted by curbside recycling programs, so it typically ends up in landfills.”
Even if they were sent to recycling centers, bread clips are so small that they would probably slip through the recycling process and end up on the floor, only to be swept up and eventually end up in the landfill.
The best way to avoid this is to either repurpose them or to avoid buying products that use them altogether.
For more information on recycling visit www.wasteawaygroup.com.