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Thousands of British tree saplings to be protected with biodegradable shelters

28 October 2021

Tubex Nature in a field protecting young saplings and trees

Hundreds of thousands of British tree saplings to be protected with first bio-based and biodegradable in nature shelters manufactured at scale

  • The bio-based, biodegradable in nature* tree shelters provide up to 5 years of protection – a technological advance for companies and organisations looking to support tree planting

  • In 2020, according to Tubex customers, tree shelters saved an estimate of over 12.5 million saplings in the UK alone – the equivalent of 4,160 hectares of new trees

  • UK Government seeks to plant 30,000 hectares of new trees each year by 2025

Today, Tubex, the leading UK-based manufacturer of ‘tree guard’ solutions, has announced a new bio-based, biodegradable in nature product will be available for forestry and woodland management firms to help them successfully grow more trees across the UK, as the Government seeks to plant 30,000 hectares of trees each year by 2025.

Available to order from October 2021, Tubex Nature is designed to be biodegradable in nature, is non-toxic and made from bio-based materials. Following months of research and development to optimise the product, the Tubex Nature tree shelters can be left in situ by planters and will naturally biodegrade over time, ideally mulched or buried at their end of life to increase the speed of degradation, becoming an optimal choice for particularly dense or difficult access areas of woodland for the collection and recycling of tree shelters.

Tubex Nature will join the suite of Tubex products that are used across thousands of acres of countryside in the UK and around the world to provide protection from browsing animals, herbicides, pesticides, and other environmental factors, while accelerating sapling growth.

Tubex Nature in a field protecting young saplings and trees


Data from Tubex customers shows that tree shelters are estimated to have saved approximately 12.5 million saplings in the UK in 2020. These figures come as the UK Government pledges to plant 30,000 hectares of new trees each year by 2025. This ambition, coupled with a current sapling shortage for the 2022 planting season, means tree shelters have never been more important for ensuring saplings have the best chance to establish into mature trees across the UK.

Announcing the new product, Rhauan Young, Commercial Sales Leader at Tubex, “We’re pleased to announce today the expansion of our Tubex portfolio of products with Tubex Nature, a solution that can now give forestry and woodland management organisations a choice of products to choose from for their particular foresting needs. We’ve listened to our customers who said that collection in some areas was difficult, such as dense woodlands or harder to access areas like forests at higher altitudes, to develop an easy solution that will biodegrade over time, without leaving any toxic chemicals behind. In 2021, the need to successfully plant trees and give saplings the best start has never been more important if the UK is to meet its tree planting targets to help achieve net zero emissions by 2050.”

In addition to its Tubex Nature product, Tubex has implemented a Collection and Recycling Programme for its long-life, polypropylene standard tree shelters to ensure the correct disposal and circular re-use of tree shelters that established trees no longer need. In its first year of operation Tubex has collected 150,000 tree shelters through the programme that will be recycled into the production of new Tubex standard products, helping increase the percentage of recycled content in those to close the loop. Where today Tubex standard tree shelters contain up to 40% recycled content, the plan is for them to contain 100% recycled content in the next few years.

*Currently under testing for ISO:17556 Soil Biodegradability.

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About Tubex:

Tubex are creators, innovators and industry pioneers in tree shelter solutions worldwide. Tubex’s shelters provide an improved micro-climate for growth, assisting with the establishment of stronger roots and leading to higher survival rates. Tubex was established in the 1970’s as a specialist plastic extruder, with its first tree shelters produced in the early 1980’s. Tubex quickly became the most popular on the market, selling well in both the UK and overseas.

Tubex is a brand owned by Berry Global, who create innovative packaging and engineered products that make life better for people and the planet. Berry Global leverage their unmatched global capabilities, sustainability leadership, and deep innovation expertise to serve customers of all sizes around the world. They partner with customers to develop, design, and manufacture innovative products with an eye toward the circular economy. For more information, visit their website, or connect with them on LinkedIn or Twitter.

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