What is eco-friendly? Why does it even matter?
Eco-friendly doesn’t have any scientific meaning, but rather refers to something that is more environmentally friendly than its conventional counterpart.
The reason that we have to be a lot more proactive and aware of our actions is that our planet, Earth, is now facing far more danger than in previous decades. Based on an UN assessment , human use of the Earth’s natural resources has tripled in the last four years.
Today, we spend more energy than ever before, plus even more, energy is spent on the particular production of plastics , which are consumed at an alarming pace today, driving life on Earth ever closer to extinction.
It basically means that whether you’re delivering presents, managing a small business, or just wanting to know how your favorite products are doing in terms of carbon footprint, everything matters – including packaging that needs to be compostable, biodegradable, and recyclable. So, if you want to start being a lot more eco-conscious in dealing with your product packaging, we are here to help.
Time to say goodbye in order to all the plastics: Below are our own favorite eco-packaging ideas that are good for your business plus perfect for the environment.
Repurposed materials: Creativity is the particular key
All you need is a bit of creativity to find some repurposed materials from your everyday life, such as tote bags, old scarves, or actually tea towels. They are all welcome!
For example, when sending out your product to customers, you could use a few basic components like old cardboard boxes and give them homely charm, with a “hand-written” (it can be typed but use an attractive font) thank you note or some personal words, giving your package a rustic vibe. Not only will be it a great way to impress your customers, but it could also be a great way to protect your item and the environment.
Cellulose: A better kind of plastic
It might be a little surprising to mention the word “plastic” right here because it has a lot of drawbacks. However, it is very hard in order to ignore the durability, flexibility, and simplicity of use.
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Consequently, the search for the more sustainable substitute has been continuing for several time, plus cellulose will be edging closer. It is usually often composed of natural materials such as hemp, wood, and cotton, making it biodegradable and compostable. It’s also relatively sturdy and moisture-resistant, ideal for packing food.
Cornstarch: From waste to packaging material
Cornstarch packaging is definitely part of a larger trend of new bioplastics developed from agricultural waste or even leftovers.
Briefly, cornstarch is one of the alternatives to plastic materials used popularly in every takeaway food company for the reason that it is 100% food-safe having a high aroma barrier and resistant to oils.
Perdue Farms will start packaging some associated with its meat products inside a more earth-friendly method with compostable foam made of cornstarch that disintegrates under running water https://t.co/9pFwxaFxI3
— CNN (@CNN) January 7, 2020
Another good thing about cornstarch is that there is no such thing as “scarcity” for this material, plus it is affordable.
Mushrooms: Sturdy plus light
Mushroom packaging, another trendy alternative to styrofoam (petrochemical from petroleum), can be manufactured through mycelium, the fungus found in mushrooms. As a result, the particular packing material is strong enough to retain things and maintain all of them in place.
When shipping items, Keap , the candle subscription company, uses mushroom product packaging. The material has durable and lightweight features that allows them in order to ship things securely while being environmentally friendly.
Minimalism: Less is more
“Keeping this simple” is among the most effective ways to make your packaging greener. Minimalism simply refers to using few materials . The idea is to reduce waste by avoiding recourse to more resources: The goal therefore is to keep the same resources circulating continually across the full product life cycle as it relates to the environment: Use, reuse, recycle, process, design, and generate.
The purpose is in order to extend the life of a product simply by converting it into a resource input for another. When you prolong the lifecycle of the particular product, this means that you are eliminating or delaying the disposal process. That is certainly the core concept associated with the circular economy .
And this leads us to another great way to ensure your packaging is eco-friendly.
Returnable packaging: Old but gold
Making your own package returnable ensures this is part of the circular economy and it can be enjoyable too. In fact, you might even provide an incentive – whether financial or the loyalty program – in order to encourage your consumers to participate.
Back then, in a simpler time, returning milk bottles to the milkman was a commonplace habit. A couple of (very few) creamery enterprises today, such as Straus Family Creamery , provide a comparable service. Customers receive a $2 deposit back if they return the particular bottle, and the bottles are reused five times before being recycled.
This old but gold strategy is definitely worth it because it is a solid circular approach plus you don’t have to worry about harming the planet.
Although there are many ways to improve the sustainability of your own packaging, what will work best with regard to you will certainly very much depend on exactly what kind of business you are engaged in and what is the business environment a person are facing, from local laws and regulations to your network associated with suppliers.
You may find that you have to change your supplier within order in order to source eco friendly product packaging materials. Or you may face local legal requirements or even traditions plus conventions that will restrict your options. So before you embark upon change, a person will need to make sure that it will be possible to accomplish.
The easiest approach to accomplish this is to take things one step at a time, assess the outcomes, then learn to expand.
Editor’s Note: The opinions expressed here by the authors are their own, not those of Impakter. com — I n the particular Featured Image: An example of environmentally friendly packaging. Featured Photo Credit: Kim Stiver.