Sustainable Packaging Options That Save Overhead Costs
The sustainable packaging campaigns weren’t popular in the business world sometime back. Exceptionally few companies would be willing to spare their resources and go green. Today, on the other hand, engaging in eco-friendly practices is fast becoming the new normal, rather than something nice to do. Many organizations have joined the campaign for more eco-friendly activities that are good for the planet. Since the earth is the only planet that humans can live in, we all have to contribute towards preserving it.
That said, sustainable packing is proving to be the solution to any eCommerce store that is thinking towards an eco-friendly direction. Whenever you sell products to your consumers, you are bound to use a variety of materials when packing and shipping them. Below is full coverage of sustainable packaging solutions and their implementation and is meant to help you navigate their ins and outs.
What Is Sustainable Packaging?
This kind of packaging is earth-friendly and doesn’t pollute the environment or further damage natural resources. It’s also the safest means of packaging products that are delicate.
For a package to be considered sustainable, the Sustainable Packaging Coalition (SPC) provides the following guidelines:
- Meets the market’s guidelines for performance and cost.
- Renewable energy should be used when sourcing, manufacturing, and transporting the package.
- It should be safe, beneficial, and healthy for anyone or any community involved in its life cycle.
- Best practices and clean production technologies are used in the manufacturing process.
- The materials don’t pose any health hazard throughout their lifecycle.
- The source materials are recyclable or renewable.
- The physical design optimizes materials and energy.
Sustainable Packaging Strategies
Now that you have an idea of what this is all about, let’s look at the packaging innovations and strategies that can point you in the direction of more eco-friendly packaging.
Encourage a light and smaller package
Reducing the size of the packaging materials used is a simple way of jumpstarting the eco-friendly campaign. It means using smaller containers, bags, and boxes when packing your products. This will reduce your shipping costs and help you be more sustainable—the lighter the packaging materials, the lower the shipping costs and more satisfaction for your customers.
Sustainable and light materials are top of the list for businesses that are both environmentally and financially minded. All that put into consideration, materials such as jute, plastic films, and molded pulp have fast become favorites in most industries.
Recycled packaging materials
Recycled packaging is an effective way of extending the life of used materials. When deciding on mailers, containers, or boxes for packaging, consider packages made from recycled materials.
Share recycling and disposal best practices
Give your customers an insight into the best ways to dispose of and recycle your packaging materials. This can get a little tricky, considering every city has its own recycling procedures. However, you can share practices by clearly labeling recyclable and disposable packaging.
A very common example of compostable product packaging material is paperboard cardboard. It’s created from used paper pulp and is also lightweight compared to other materials. It’s ideal for shipping boxes because it can be easily cut and formed.
You may end up spending more on materials and shipping, depending on the type of you settle on. This is a factor that you should put into consideration when pricing your products. Ensure that you don’t take too much hit if you decide that the extra costs will come from your end.
Don’t change everything at once
It can be tempting to change your entire packaging approach at once when trying to achieve eco-friendly practices. However, you might end up causing more harm than good to your business.
Introducing new materials and approaches requires research, testing, and even a number of trials. Trying to do everything at once may be overwhelming for your business at the end of the day, and you may not achieve the intended results.
Types of Cost-Savings with Sustainable Packaging
Even though there are several kinds developed daily, there are a few types that seem to stand out. A good example is polylactic acid developed from organic, renewable sources such as corn and sugarcane. This packaging is biodegradable, unlike regular plastic packaging that is petroleum-based.
Another popular kind of packaging is derived from dairy products. These materials are obtained from proteins of dairy and their byproducts such as casein and whey. This kind of packing is somewhat valuable and is even edible sometimes.
Even though there are a number of options for businesses that are working on achieving more environmentally friendly packaging, switching can sometimes turn out to be costly.