Conventional chewing gums use the term 'gum base' as an ingredient - that's code for plastic and all sorts of synthetics that don't have to be named.
In the 1950s, traditional gum base was a sustainable natural tree sap called chicle however, as popularity grew, manufacturers turned to synthetic plastics and rubbers to meet the growing demand and to cut costs.
These days, gum base is usually made from a variety of the following:
- Butadiene-styrene rubber
- Isobutylene-isoprene copolymer (butyl rubber)
- Paraffin (via the Fischer-Tropsch process)
- Petroleum wax
- Polyvinyl acetate
The demand is growing for plastic-free products and we’re glad that more and more people are refusing to chew on plastic (once they find out about it).
Did you know that chewing gum contributes to around 100,000 tonnes of plastic pollution worldwide every single year!