Clothing hangers should not be made out of plastic. These Earthsaver clothing hangers are made from 100% corn grown in the U.S., and they are manufactured in the U.S. by Merrick. However, conventionally grown corn involves the use of many of pesticides and artificial fertilizers. Organically grown corn would be more effective. Better still would to build them out of locally grown bamboo or wood grown in managed forests in the U.S.
The hangers are designed to hold cloth more efficiently — Merrick calls the style a “heavy shirt” design. Wal-Mart is current selling these Earthsaver hangers, but they are not publicizing the product at all.
The price is $3.50 for five — this about three time more expensive than plastic hangers. If sales volume increase, I’m sure the price will go down. Gary Barker makes a similar point in his critique of the hangers on Rajeev Singh’s blog:
We’re a sustainable product development company with our first product
being 100% recyclable hangers,named Ditto. We were going to make
hangers out of bio-plastic but all our research revealed a long list of
problems with this new material:
Corn based plastic is only
compostable in municipal composting facilities with temperatures that
reach 140º for 10 consecutive days, an environment not possible in home
Most of the country does not have municipal composting programs.
Should bio-plastic get into regular plastic recycling it will foul the entire batch and render it unrecyclable.
If bio-plastic is not composted in a landfill will last as long as oil based plastic (1000+ years).
Corporate agriculture methods have some of the highest toxicity rates from pesticides and nitrogen fertilizers.
Sadly the time is not right for this new material. We hope in the years ahead, however, that it will be.
Via: Sustainable Is Good