The presence of microplastics is ubiquitous and has infiltrated our food chain
These tiny particles are present in fish, salt, honey, and drinking water, and it is believed that we consume thousands of microplastics unknowingly every year. This issue has become a global concern, with researchers raising an alarm about its harmful effects.
According to Greenpeace, the amount of plastic waste we produce annually worldwide reached 500 million tonnes in 2020, equivalent to 2,800,000 blue whales stacked on top of one another. This is a clear indication that the world is becoming a Plastic Planet, where the impact of plastic waste is increasingly visible.
One of the most significant issues with plastic waste is that it does not biodegrade, but instead erodes and breaks down into tiny fragments that we often unknowingly consume. Some plastics, such as microbeads used in cosmetics products, are so small that they pass through filters in sewage treatment plants, further polluting our environment.
Researchers from the University of Ghent have found that people ingest around 11,000 microplastic particles each year. These particles have been found in tap and bottled water, fish and seafood, salt, beer, and honey. Even underground salt deposits contain microplastics, which is a worrying trend.
Despite researchers’ findings, we still don’t know the long-term effects of microplastic ingestion on human health. Studies suggest that microplastics could be a “toxic bomb,” as they attract other poisons such as hydrocarbons or heavy metals that are hazardous to our health. Moreover, marine animals, such as fish ashellfish, ingest microplastics that humans consume when eating them.
The issue of microplastic pollution is alarming, and we must take urgent action to address this problem. Synthetic fibers, dust from tires, and paint from various sources are all sources of microplastic pollution that contribute to this issue. As we move towards a sustainable future, it is crucial to be aware of the problem and its impact on our health and the environment.
At Drinkotec we work to fight against the carbon footprint and plastic pollution, always promoting the use of postmix and reusable cups when consuming beverages: