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3 Ways to Improve the Environmental Impact of your Packaging

We are all interested in how we can be more environmentally conscious about our packaging, whether it is to use no plastics or less plastics or whether your packaging fits your product.

Here are 3 quick ways that you can improve the environmental impact of your packaging.

Use the same medium throughout your pack.

Mostly you use a corrugated box for the distribution of most items and then we could use a plastic void fill or a plastic tape.

If this was all paper it means that your customer only has one type of product to recycle rather than having to separate and segregate different packaging forms.

If you recycle a corrugated box with plastic tape on it this must be separated during the recycling process.

Use paper tapes and it can be recycled together.

Consider Gummed Paper Tape or Self-Adhesive Paper tape for this.

Also, when considering a void fill product, think about paper alternatives so that it can all be recycled together.

Review your pack weights

Now I am not advising everyone to go for thinner/lighter packaging. But I am saying that a review of what your packaging is to achieve could help the environment. The most frequent examples that we see include: -

  1. Products are too thin or light, so you use more.

    A push to use “Lighter” or “cheaper” products was considered as being environmentally friendly and we have seen a huge issue where, as a result, customers have had issues with damages etc so now use more to compensate for it.

    Some examples include, pallet wrap films have gone thinner, a pallet goes over because stability is not adequate for the product so more layers of pallet wrap is applied to improve the stability of the pallet.

    Adhesive tape – Acrylic tapes are cheaper than solvent tapes but stick in a different way. Operators think it is not as sticky so put on more layers of tape to make sure the box is stuck properly.

  2. We have always used this product.

 

If you have used the same specification of packaging for a long time you are probably missing out on advances in technology and products. Use your packaging supplier to come up with a re-design of your packaging. They should be able to recommend and test and trial their recommendations in view of reducing packaging and lowering costs per item.

Product configurations.

If you can pack more of your products in the same space, you can have a huge positive impact on the environment. Examples are:

  1. More products in a box – If you have always sold them in 6’s what happens if you go to sell in 10’s? Less boxes, tape, deliveries etc.
  2. More products on a pallet. If your pallets are 1800mm high what would you need to change to get another layer of boxes on the pallet?
  3. Faster packaging or unpackaging time. Being able to pack with less resources and process times has a positive affect on the environment and sustainability.

We trust that you have found this useful. If you would like to discuss any of this with any of our team, please do not hesitate to give us a call.

 

Date posted Fri 15 May 2020by Robert McEwan in Blog

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