Mass. startup to make photo-degradable bags

Billerica startup GXT Green is using $3 million in angel investment to get its green products into the hands of consumers and help businesses reduce their carbon footprint.

Founded in 2009, GXT Green works with businesses and organizations to mitigate their greenhouse gas emissions through various projects such as forest preservation. A division of Global Exchange Technologies, GXT also markets sustainable packaging products including ECOgrade photo-degradable bags and ECO-R³SP packaging.

The bags use 46 percent less plastic resin, less energy to manufacture and can be recycled safely, according to Ed Weisberg, GXT’s senior vice president of marketing and Sustainable Minds LLC board advisor.

“The coolest thing is that if they are littered, they will photo-degrade to a non-toxic residue from exposure to sunlight in less than 240 days,” Weisberg said. “Other types of photo-degradable, or oxo-degradable bags, have been on the market for a while. However, these contain heavy metal salts, which are the agents that stimulate the oxidation. Unfortunately, these salts remain in the residue, and create toxicity.”

The oxidizing agent used in the ECOgrade bags is calcium carbonate, which is also used as a filler in toothpaste and as a base in medicine, according to Weisberg. GXT’s bags are currently being piloted at six grocery chains.

Read more in Mass High Tech.

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