The Riddle of Natural Plastic Containers

The Riddle of Natural Plastic Containers
Container and Packaging
by Container and Packaging
September 8, 2020, Updated June 16, 2021

Here's a riddle for you: This plastic is normal, ordinary, unaltered, and untouched. It enjoys being outside in the wilderness, roughing it with the wildlife. This plastic munches on organic granola, and doesn't dye its hair or wear makeup. It's not quite clear, and it's not quite white. What kind of plastic is this? If you guessed natural plastic, then you're right! Go celebrate by eating your granola in the woods with some friendly wildlife.

What is Natural Plastic?

What exactly is natural plastic? This is a question we often receive at Container & Packaging Supply. Natural is simply a color of plastic. Some containers are white, some are black, and still others are green, blue, clear, or white. There are even a couple of purple containers, like this purple PET bottle. Those colors are easy to define. A blue bottle like this 1 ounce Boston round is exactly what color you would expect: blue. Amber will be amber. Green will be green. But what color is natural?

Natural plastic is not quite white, and not quite clear. It can be slightly opaque, or may be almost clear. Check out this natural LDPE Boston round and this natural HDPE f-style container to see what natural looks like. You can also browse the CPS Image Catalog to see all of the natural plastic containers we offer. Just select natural for your product color, and it will do the work for you. Natural containers come in all shapes and sizes, from pails to tubs, from honey bears to industrial round bottles. They aren't crystal clear, but may be translucent enough to see some of your product through their walls.

What Plastics can be Natural Colored?

Natural colored plastic can be found in HDPE (high-density polyethylene), MDPE (medium-density polyethylene), LDPE (low-density polyethylene), or PP (polypropylene) containers. When these resins are made, their original color is this ambiguous natural color. Other plastics resins, like PS, PETE, and PVC are all clear in their original states. Dyes and colorants can be added to any of the resins to create various different colors, like cobalt, green, or amber. But if those colorants aren't added, HDPE, MDPE, LDPE, and PP are all originally natural colored.

We have solved the riddle of what natural plastic is. It is the not-quite-white-or-clear hue of certain uncolored resins. At CPS, we recommend that you request a sample before buying a whole shipment. That way you can be sure that your chosen container exactly meets your specifications. And you'll know how amazing your product looks in a natural-colored container.