containers also give off a fertilizer:

US: Iowa researchers work on degradable bioplastic plant container

Iowa researchers are studying the possibilities of sustainable bioplastic containers for crops and plants to be sold in for commercial uses to consumers. The containers they developed give off a fertilizer affect while the crops or plants are growing. As the crop or plant grows inside the container, the container loses coloring on the outside due to the crop or plant taking away the fertilizer and nutrients. The container also then begin to degrade.

“Our idea is that the producer would grow the plant in this container, the consumer would buy it and when they go to put their plant in the ground they would take the plant out and break this [container] into pieces and put that in the hole [with the plant] so it can degrade in the soil while the plant grows,” James Schrader, an assistant scientist in horticulture, said in an article at the

The containers have proteins made in with the bioplastic, are used as a fertilizer for the crop or plant. The fertilizer is used both when the crop or plant is growing in the greenhouse and while the crop or plant is growing in the ground according to Schrader.

One issue with the program involving the containers is mold growth on the inside. However, the growing of mold is a rare problem the researchers face.

The program is in its third year of a five year study, supported with a $1.94 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.


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