3 Key Features of Sustainable Packaging and Why They Matter
Sustainability is a key aspect of your business. Find out how sustainable packaging can benefit you, your customers, the environment and the economy.
Your packaging tells a story about your brand. It helps people understand what your business is all about, whether that’s providing effective and affordable products or retailing highly specialised items that can change people’s lives.
Now, businesses across all sectors are making the switch to sustainable packaging alternatives. Each brand is hoping to tell a more positive tale, reduce its carbon footprint and create a better world for everyone, but it’s not a straightforward process. There’s a lot to consider when changing your packaging, from your company’s overall environmental impact, how your customers view your brand and your company’s bottom line. So, here’s what you need to know when choosing sustainable packaging.
What Makes Packaging Sustainable?
At its core, sustainable packaging should minimise the depletion of natural resources and maintain ecological balance in production. Many forms of packaging fall short of these ideals, either in manufacturing or at the end of their natural lifespan.
For packaging to be considered sustainable, it needs to meet several criteria. It must be:
1. Made from the Right Sustainable Materials
The current use of plastics isn’t sustainable. A huge amount of resources are required in their production, and packaging quality is often compromised for short-term gain. Plastic is produced at an immense scale, which drives costs down for businesses — making it a tempting option to save on packaging costs — but consumers are pressuring brands to provide eco-friendly alternatives.
Many forms of oil-based plastic packaging aren’t recyclable or made from recycled materials. On the other hand, paper and cardboard packaging have a much more positive impact on the environment. They provide a continual loop of recyclability and only require minimal processing, making them infinitely more sustainable than their synthetic counterparts.
The origin of the materials is almost as important as the materials themselves. Paper and paper-based products are essential and should be responsibly sourced to provide maximum sustainability for businesses and consumers.
There’s no way around it — to get paper, you need to cut down trees. This doesn’t mean that all paper products contribute to deforestation, nor does it mean that using paper is inherently bad for the planet. At Packaging Supplies, all of our packaging products are sourced from managed forests, giving you and your customers peace of mind when using paper or cardboard-based packaging.
3. Naturally Biodegradable or Compostable
Packaging materials and their source are incredibly important, but they pale into insignificance if the packaging isn’t properly disposed of at the end of its life. Some forms of plastic packaging might be recyclable, yet still, hardly any plastic is recycled due to confusion around Resin Identification Numbers and the availability of recycling points.
That’s why biodegradability is a key factor in sustainable packaging as it closes the loop on the packaging’s lifecycle. Paper and cardboard packaging restore balance to the environment as they’re made using natural resources. When they decompose, they don’t leave behind any trace of their existence. Compostable packaging does the same thing, it just requires more specific conditions to degrade more effectively.
Why You Should Switch to Sustainable Packaging
Now you know what to look for in sustainable packaging, it’s time to make a change. The world’s most iconic toy manufacturer is going green, proving that even products that were originally produced using non-biodegradable materials are making their operations more sustainable. We can help you move in a planet-positive direction with the best recycled, recyclable, biodegradable and compostable packaging that protects your products without the non-recoupable environmental cost.
If you’re looking for something a bit fancier than a humble, brown shipping box or a plain, white postal box, why not have a no-obligation chat with our in-house design team for a free design quote? Our custom packaging is printed on natural materials with veggie-based inks, and we’ll help you create a classy, custom design that retains sustainability as a key focus.
Start your eco-friendly journey with us today. Check out our online shop, where you’ll find hundreds of eco-friendly packaging products that help protect the planet. Want to give your customers something extra? Get a free design quote from our friendly in-house design team who’d be more than happy to help.