Biobased, Plant based, what does it all mean?

By now, you may be familiar with the terms biobased or plant based.  In November 2022, CRATIV Packaging launched its latest innovation, CRATIV PB – plant based packaging!  All of CRATIV’s child-resistant cannabis packaging is offered in plant based resin.  Plant based packaging isn’t that new, in the past 5 years or so you’ve likely seen the USDA biobased product label on numerous products in the grocery stores. 

Common household product packaging with biopreferred label

Do you know what the USDA certified biobased product label means?  How and why are their quantities measured? If you are not familiar with the biobased product label we’ll do our best to explain it! 

USDA Certified Plant Based Packaging


In 2002 the BioPreferred Program was created by the 2002 Farm Bill and reauthorized and expanded as part of the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 or the 2018 Farm Bill. 

According to the USDA, the department that oversees the BioPreferred program – a biobased product “is- (A) composed, in whole or in significant part, of biological products, including renewable domestic agricultural materials, renewable chemicals, and forestry materials; or (B) an intermediate ingredient or feedstock. Biobased Products are derived from raw materials such as plants and other renewable agricultural, marine, and forestry materials. Biobased products generally provide an alternative to conventional petroleum derived products and include a diverse range of offerings such as lubricants, detergents, inks, fertilizers, and bioplastics…”

When you see the USDA Certified Biobased Product label on packaging it means that they contain the listed percentage of biobased material, certified by the USDA.  The higher that percentage, the higher the quantity of renewable materials sourced to make it. 

Biobased content is calculated using only organic carbon. What is organic carbon?  Think back to tenth grade science class.  Yes, you’ll need your periodic table!  Organic carbons have C-H bonds. Carbon and Hydrogen! 

This equation can be used to calculate biobased content:

“new” organic carbon (plant or agricultural based)
_______________________________________ × 100 = % biobased content
“new” organic carbon + “old” commonly known as fossil fuel-based organic carbon


CRATIV’s plant-based marijuana packaging is 57% plant based. CRATIV’s plant-based resin contains no conventional plastic. Utilizing renewable, biobased material plays an important role in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. CRATIV’s proprietary resin blend is designed to return to soil naturally while providing nutrients to plant life! The components of the biobased resin CRATIV uses are listed on the GRAS (generally recognized as safe) list, are non-toxic for natural and marine environments, #7 recyclable, and are known to be compostable! 

If you are a cannabis business looking to reduce their environmental impact or are required to have a sustainable packaging plan by your state’s cannabis regulations, then CRAITV’s line of plant based products are an optimal solution! Not only are CRATIV’s products made from plants, CRATIV can help reduce your carbon emissions output by purchasing North America made products! 

As a resource, CRATIV can provide customers our USDA Biobased product label to incorporate on product labels or in marketing materials! 

Contact us today!  Call 720-651-9384 to learn more!  Or browse and shop our selection of sustainable cannabis packaging 

Ashley Lecount
Ashley Lecount
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