Toronto, Ontario, Canada — SunChips will start appearing in fully-compostable bags this month, and as part of the packaging launch, Frito Lay Canada has been working with local composters to make sure the material is handled properly.

Last year, Frito Lay announced that it would release a SunChips bag that could degrade in home and industrial compost settings by Earth Day 2010.

The new bag is made of more than 90 percent plant-based material, with the remainder made up of naturally-occurring minerals like copper and titanium, said Helmi Ansari, Frito Lay Canada's sustainability leader.

The first bag sizes to transition are the 225 and 425 gram (8 and 15 ounce) bags, and the rest will switch over in August. In the U.S., the first bags to go compostable are the 10.5 ounce bags.

Made with NatureWorks' Ingeo plant-based polylactic acid, the bags are certified though the Biodegradable Products Institute to break down in hot, active compost piles within 14 weeks.

"Municipal composting is quite prevalent in Canada," Ansari said, adding that more than 50 percent of Canadian municipalities and residents have access to composting.

In the last couple of months, Frito Lay Canada has been reaching out to local composting services and the Compost Council of Canada to educate them about the new bag, show what it looks like, make them aware that it will start coming into their systems, and explain that it can be composted along with food waste and other items.

"It's still a new thing for us and will be a new thing for them," Ansari said.