Plastic in food and ways to reduce it
According to Columbia University and Rutgers University researchers, a litre of bottled water contains almost a quarter of a million pieces of nanoplastic, which were detected for the first time using a microscope using dual lasers. One famous brand of bottled water contained up to 400,000. Plastic particles per litre. These are particles smaller than a micron in size – for comparison, a human hair is approximately 83 microns wide. According to scientists, most plastic comes from bottles and reverse osmosis membrane filters that protect water from other pollutants.
According to research by the University of Toronto experts, 90% of protein sources – including pork, beef, chicken, tofu and three plant-based substitutes – contain as much microplastic as fish. The study’s authors estimated that the average American adult may consume approximately 11,500. Microplastic particles per year, and the potential exposure of Americans reaches 3.8 million microplastic particles.
How to reduce microplastics in the human environment? For example, eating less processed and packaged foods, not heating meals in plastic containers in the microwave, using plastic-free personal hygiene products, giving up synthetic clothing and using the car less often. In the UK, the start-up Tire Collective has built a device that absorbs microplastics and other pollutants from tire friction on the road. Meanwhile, scientists from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology in Melbourne have developed a magnetic powder that can remove microplastics from water.