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Mexican researchers have discovered a way to turn cactus leaves into a material with similar properties to plastic.

The new plastic alternative, mostly comprised of juiced cactus leaves, rapidly biodegrades and doesn’t require crude oil like traditional plastics do, a potentially less harmful way to package food and other goods.

The new alternative plastics start to break down after sitting in the soil for a month. In water, they break down in a matter of days according to Sandra Pascoe Ortiz, the University of the Valley of Atemajac engineer who developed the material.

Source: Futurism