Your April 25 Viewpoint [“As goes Coke …”, Page 6] suggests that the use of bio-based materials and recycle content are two sides of the same coin — that these are alternative, mutually exclusive, solutions for Coke and all of us, to a significant environmental issue. This is not correct.
The truth is both simpler and more complex.
The chemistry of the PET molecule, which is the primary determinant of whether PET can be successfully recycled back into PET bottles in a [business-to-business] recycling system, is exactly the same whether its components are sourced from biomass or petroleum. Bio-PET is as recyclable as petroleum-based PET, and/or with petroleum-based PET. The two are interchangeable in the recycle stream.
Whether, on the other hand, it is environmentally or economically sound to source all or some of the components of the PET molecule from biomass is an interesting (and arguably unresolved) question. The answer, however, has nothing to do with the recyclability of the resulting bio-PET molecule in the existing petro-PET recycle stream. It is PET and it is recyclable.
These two issues are sufficiently complex on their own without conflating them.