BioSpecs by SBC and Business-NGO Working Group

The Sustainable Biomaterials Collaborative and the Business-NGO Working Group released the BioSpecs for Food Service Ware at the Biopolymers Symposium in Chicago, September 30, 2009. The BioSpecs are purchasing specifications for environmentally preferable compostable biobased food service products. They outline sustainability criteria and recognition levels for food service ware made from compostable biobased materials. They provide a framework that enables buyers to assess the sustainability of these products during three stages of their life cycle: (1) biomass production, (2) manufacturing, and (3) end of product life. Those products meeting the highest sustainability standards at each stage will achieve recognition at the “Gold” level.

The BioSpecs are not intended to evaluate the full range of food service ware, such as durable ceramic plates or metal cutlery. They are applicable only within the biobased product category. Indeed, durable, reusable food service products are environmentally preferable to single-use biobased products and should be considered as a first option.

The BioSpecs will be updated based on public comments and will be further revised as the emerging industry and market evolve. For a full version of the BioSpecs, go to:

To see the press release, go to: