Awareness of the current plight of the environment is on the rise, and with that, more and more consumers are becoming conscious of their product choices. In fact, there is an eco-conscious movement in which a group of consumers vows only to buy sustainable products. Plastic is one of the most damaging and insidious man-made wastes that manufacturers are consistently producing.
Most of the plastics that don’t get recycled end up in landfills, oceans, and forests, where it can harm plant and animal life. Thankfully, industries are slowly actively participating in looking for sustainable packaging in order to be able to adapt to the new eco movement.
Here are some examples of sustainable packaging trends and their advantages.
Using plant-based materials that biodegrade over time isn’t new. This kind of sustainable packaging is known to “rot” away over time as soon as its purpose has been realized, which is to carry the product safely. Biodegradable packaging is mostly made of fibrous materials that are environmentally friendly and compostable.
There are plenty of plant-based materials that companies are looking to source. Some examples are sugarcane, coconut, and cornstarch. Research for biodegradable is ongoing, so there may be more to be introduced in the future.
Instead of using plastic, some companies have started using recycled materials as their default packaging. Some of the most common materials that retail stores use are recycled paper and cardboard. These two are some of the most recyclable out of all the packaging.
The sustainable recycled paper and cardboards are made from postindustrial wastes. These are sourced from sustainably managed forests and plants and are FSC-certified.
Cleverly Designed Multi-use Packaging
Apart from using recycled material, some companies have gone above and beyond to design their packaging cleverly. There are shopping bags or packing sleeves that can transform into something useful.
For example, H&M has stopped using plastic bags and has turned to recycled paper bags that can turn into a reusable clothes hanger. Some box packaging can turn into dollhouses, and some may contain seeds that consumers can plant in their backyard.
Advantages of Sustainable Packaging
The act of phasing out plastics contributes to the preservation of the planet in the long run. It is critical now more than ever for everyone to participate in this movement. The earth is projected to be dying at an alarming rate, and the species that live in it will suffer the consequences. Using sustainable packaging is only one way of stopping climate change, and there are so many more things needed to do.
Nations must work together to slow the degradation of the planet. It is highly hoped that the trend continues because a small action by an individual or a few companies can have a ripple effect, and it can grow from there. There are benefits of using sustainable packaging, and here are some of them:
Reduced Consumption of Resources
The main point of using sustainable packaging is to reduce the environmental footprint. Some manufacturing processes may involve a lot more materials. That means more CO2 emissions that contribute to global warming and climate change. Apart from this intangible advantage, adapting businesses can take pride in taking steps to be less wasteful.
Improved Brand Reputation
When you get with the times and are aware of what consumers want, your brand will have a considerable boost in a positive reputation. Having a good image will mean more loyal customers and, therefore, more returns for your company’s profits. People love responsible companies.
In the bid to find the best use for sustainable packaging while using fewer resources, companies are finding ways to innovate. Whether it’s by smart packaging and making it multipurpose, the transformation becomes organic. Once that is realized, out-of-the-box packaging ideas surface and make brands stand out.
What You Can Do
While it’s good that industries are becoming more eco-conscious, you can do many things that can make a difference. As someone who takes part in the online buying culture, you know very well of the wasteful packaging that products come in.
Whether you are an online buyer or a seller, consider reusing old paper bags and boxes when packing products to sell. Ask others to do the same so you’re not producing meaningless trash. If everyone can get in the habit, then that means less waste going to landfills and oceans.
Melissa Page is a web copywriter, content strategist and fashion enthusiast. She’s on a mission to turn her passion (which is fashion) into business and share her experience through writing. When she’s not writing, you can find her traveling, reading entrepreneurship books or hanging out with her cats.
Photo courtesy: Packhelp