Rhodes Yepsen

Rhodes Yepsen

Rhodes Yepsen

Speaker | Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI)

Milford, NJ | exec.dir@bpiworld.org

Rhodes Yepsen is Executive Director of BPI, a non-profit advocating for the value of certified compostable packaging in diverting organic waste to composting. Yepsen’s expertise is on systems-based composting solutions, specifically the synergy in solving for food waste and packaging at the same time – to address climate change, ecosystem impacts, and regenerative agriculture. He has served on the Board of USCC, is on the Advisory Council for the US Plastics Pact, and was an editor and writer at BioCycle magazine.

Session Code: F4

Track: Diversion and Collection

Session Name: Compostable Products Update

Session Time: Thursday, January 26, 8:30 AM – 10:00 AM

Presentation Title: Field Validating Compostable Products: How BPI is Addressing Composter Confidence in Certification

Presentation Description: BPI certification was launched in 1999 as a joint initiative with USCC, with agreement between the producers and receivers of the compostable product on the criteria for certification. Fast forward 20+ years and there’s a growing composter confidence issue, in part linked back to alignment on whether the certification criteria is a reliable enough indicator for real world breakdown. BPI’s path forward to address this issue was informed by a 2021 stakeholder workshop and led to work on a standardized field test method at ASTM, as well as a program for composters to check whether plastics in their overs are compostable or a lookalike contaminant.