The packaging you use to ship your products says a lot about you as a company. For example, by choosing packaging that’s overkill for the purpose and results in a significant amount of waste, you could unwittingly portray a message that you are a company which doesn’t take its corporate, environmental or social responsibilities very seriously.
Today, consumers appreciate businesses that go out of their way to take important issues, like the environment, seriously. That’s why businesses that utilise greener packaging options can actually differentiate themselves from their competition and even stand out in their respective marketplaces as a result.
Reduce The Amount Of Packaging You Use
First and foremost, one of the best ways to make your packaging greener is simply by using less of it. We’ve all received a huge box through the post, only to open it and find that it contains something much smaller.
The key is to choose the right size cardboard box for the product(s) you are sending. It will not only reduce the chance of the product rattling around inside and potentially getting damaged, but also reduce the amount of packaging waste too.
[Related reading: Tips For Choosing The Right Cardboard Box For Your Product]
Use Biodegradable Packaging Materials
Some types of plastic can take up to 450 years to degrade naturally, while others made with polyethylene terephthalate (PET) will never truly biodegrade. They instead just decompose to a certain level, at which point they release harmful chemicals into the environment.
That’s why biodegradable packaging materials are so important. If you can utilise them as part of your business operations, then please do.
Biodegradable packaging is wonderful because it poses little to no risk to the environment, even if disposed of inappropriately. While edible packaging and packaging made from 100% natural materials may not be suitable for every product you sell, it might be that you can use it for the odd item here and there.
[Related reading: 5 Different Types Of Green Packaging]
Try Not To Mix Plastics
Consumers today are not averse to recycling, but it makes a big difference if you make the process as easy as possible for them. One way to do this is by not mixing too many different types of packaging in one package.
For example, if you use two different types of plastic in your packaging, you may prevent it from being recycled. That’s why it’s always better to stick with just one type of polymer wherever possible.
Educate Your Customers
If the packaging you use can be easily recycled, tell your customers exactly that. They might not be aware, but if you tell them in emails and plaster recyclable labels on your packages, there’s a good chance they’ll dispose of them responsibly i.e. recycle them.
Source Your Packaging Locally
Biodegradable and recyclable packaging that you have to source overseas is a bit counter-intuitive. That’s because while it’s obviously great that you are opting for greener packaging solutions, their associated carbon footprint will likely be much larger than traditional alternatives.
Purchase your packaging products from a reputable packaging supplier local to you – and by local we’re talking domestic. Moreover, by using a domestic packaging supplier you can also save on shipping costs and often cut out the need for airfreight.