In the past 60 years, almost 8 billion tons of plastic have been produced. Thales, world leader in digital security, is convinced that reducing the usage from source would be the most effective way to get rid of unnecessary plastic waste. As a result, Thales was the first supplier providing Gemalto Bio Sourced (PLA) cards, an innovative alternative to plastic, and has already delivered more than 2 million of those to banks in different countries.
Amongst them, APS, the leading Maltese community bank has recently signed a contract with Thales to migrate its entire portfolio of cards in the first months of 2020, resulting in the production of nearly 60 000 eco-friendly personalized cards. They have made this essential shift towards eco-responsibility, the majority of banking cards being up until now uniquely produced with PVC. A few banks have already adopted an eco-responsible attitude by using Poly Lactic Acid (PLA). Changing the manufacturing material from PVC to PLA, a renewable bio-source reduces the carbon footprint considerably. Gemalto is the first supplier to produce these bio-sourced cards, which reduces the use of PVC by more than 80% within the cards.
Gemalto Bio Sourced cards (based on PLA) are the leading option when it comes to eco-friendly products. Poly Lactic Acid, a sustainable plastic substitute made of field corn from Nebraska, US, is derived from renewable sources. The field corn used is primarily exploited for ethanol production and livestock feed, with no dietary purpose. PLA is biodegradable and has a very low rate of greenhouse gas emission, when PVC is not bio-degradable and emanates toxic gas when incinerated. This is why Gemalto turned to PLA, which is now used to produce 84% of the core structure of every card, the antenna of the NFC cards (contactless) and the chip making up the rest. The final product brings seamless experience to the customer, without having any impact on the card printing or personalization.