Food packaging should:
1) Contain the food.
2) Able to protect the food from rough handling, transport and biotic factors ( animals and insect attacks) .
3) Protect the food from chemical and microbial spoilage.
4) Able to influence the consumers to make a buying decision.
Whenever a company design a food package, the above mentioned considerations are given importance. They never think of bad consequences. Maybe they are thinking of it but never mind to take proper actions.
Some of the bad impacts of packaging materials are:
1) Bisphenol A / BPA. This chemicals are leached out from carbonate plastics. Plastics with the recycling symbol of 7. This is an endocrine disruptor that might result to variety of problems.
update as of June 19, 2016:
Low level BPA exposure is safe according to FDA. See “FDA Approved Number 7 Juice Bottle ?”
2) DEHP. Yet another substance that leach out from polyvinyl chloride, PVC, packaging materials. Intake might result to reproductive problems, diabetics, obesity, acute toxicity and heart disorders.
3) Pollution. Staying in Manila Bay is enjoyable only at night. Daytime is the reverse. The sea has dark color and have a lot of floating garbage. Examine them and you will notice that most are food packaging such as chip bags, styrofoam boxes, pet bottles, coffee and juice cups and drinking straws. Consuming public lack discipline, just throwing packages anywhere.
4) Forest denudation. Packaging manufacture requires cutting lots of trees and mining of minerals.
5) Extinction of land and water species. Polluted water bodies and denuded forest are not the fit environment for many living organisms. Those that cannot withstand harsh conditions face the reality of extinction.
6) Land slides and flash floods. Trees hold soil. When cut, soil particles are loosened and cause landslides during heavy rains. Most packaging materials are non-biodegradable. They clogged canals and other waterways. Combination of heavy rains, denuded forest and clogged waterways will result to flash floods.