A Greenpeace East Asia study of 39 brands of table salts from all over the world revealed that 36 contained plastics. The South Korean research team noted that the density of microplastics found in table salts across the world varied dramatically, but that Asian brands were particularly high. The researchers also noted that density of plastics correlated to geographic origin, with sea salts containing most, followed by lake and rock salts.
In 2018 plastic pollution moved into the public conscious, with many governments, businesses, and civil societies launching legislation, campaigns, or programs to deal with the surfeit of plastic in our environment. The problem of plastic is global, but Asia has particularly dangerous levels of plastic circulating through its ecosystems - including salt. Will clever consumer-targeted schemes like Indonesia’s plastic-for-bus-fare program, the EU’s upstream legislation for producers of plastic products, and companies innovating with circular business models and plastic replacements be enough to quell the deluge of plastic? If not, what needs to be done to solve this important issue?