Kickstart: Plastics vs. 'the murder hornet'
You recall, I’m sure, the discovery of the “murder hornet” in the U.S. last year, shortly after the COVID-19 pandemic began. The insects are officially an Asian giant hornet and got the name “murder hornet” because they killed off honeybees, not humans. (Although as the biggest hornet species in the world, the insects grow to about 1.5 inches in length and are certainly bigger than I’d like to encounter, even if I don’t risk death.)But don’t worry. Plastics are here to take on those hornets.A French beekeeper who lost 35 hives of bees — half of his operation — to the hornets has created a trap for them using a specially designed injection molded crate with openings that trap the hornets inside.Denis Jaffré markets his traps under the name Jabeprode. You can find more at (although it’s in French) or check out a story from industrial design company , in English.”The bottom of the crate is lined with honeycombs for bait, screened off to prevent actual access,” Rain Noe writes for Core 77. “Murder hornets travel through the funnel tips in an effort to get at the bait, and unable to find their way back out, die inside the crate.”Steelcase Inc., like a lot of global companies, has set some big goals to reduce its carbon footprint. One way to do that, the Grand Rapids, Mich.-based company has said, is to reduce the amount of packaging used to ship its office furniture.Each of its Ology-brand standing desks, for instance, ships with “8 feet of foam, 25 feet of stretch wrap and four Plastic corner protection caps,” Steelcase writes in a blog post. It’s an amount of waste that its customers complain fills dumpsters with plastics that end up in the landfill.So starting in February 2020, workers from across Steelcase’s corporate team — and a few dealers — joined forces to and determine just what could be done to reduce plastics waste in shipping.Steps taken so far have reduced 13,000 pounds of wood per year in one product, eliminated the need for expanded polypropylene foam blocks in another piece and will save Steelcase $200,000 each year. Facebook may have either cracked the code for “smart” glasses or ruined the reputation for cool fashion that Ray-Bans had, depending on your point of view. (You can guess my point of view based on the subject line above.)The social media giant, working with EssilorLuxottica, the French company that makes the classic acrylic and polycarbonate glasses, have begun selling , a pair of Wayfarer sunglasses equipped with tiny cameras that can shoot photos or video without the need for your smartphone.The Sept. 9 introduction of Ray-Ban Stories comes said they were working on a project to create smart glasses. The glasses are priced at $299.While previous attempts at smart glasses, like Google Glass, were essentially a wearable computer, the Ray-Bay Stories are a pair of glasses that happen to have cameras and electronic controls in them. The glasses weigh just a few grams more than normal Wayfarers, in a review.”The tech in the glasses is so hidden that it’s hard to tell there are cameras on them at all,” he writes. “The white recording light is also fairly dim, which could pose privacy concerns if people don’t realize the glasses are capturing photos or video.” Do you have an opinion about this story? Do you have some thoughts you’d like to share with our readers? Plastics News would love to hear from you. Email your letter to Editor at Please enter a valid email address.Please enter your email address.Please verify captcha.Please select at least one newsletter to subscribe. Staying current is easy with Plastics News delivered straight to your inbox, free of charge. Subscribe to Plastics News Plastics News covers the business of the global plastics industry. We report news, gather data and deliver timely information that provides our readers with a competitive advantage.Customer Service: