When was the last time you purchased a large, new appliance and had it delivered to your home? What packaging did it come in?

Chances are it arrived in a cardboard box with moulded polystyrene and plastic straps holding it in place.

It’s a common packaging setup for safely shipping large, expensive items to ensure they don’t get damaged, even scratched before they’ve arrived at their new home.

However, while cardboard boxes can be recycled and reused, the moulded polystyrene used to secure large appliances isn’t so easy. That’s because expanded polystyrene (EPS), the type often used for packaging, is considered an end product. In other words, there’s very little you can do with it except shred it into more EPS.

Furthermore, because polystyrene is extremely lightweight for its size, and often comes in bulky pieces, it makes recycling it disproportionately costly. Unfortunately, as a result, old polystyrene often finds itself adorning the sides of roads, waterways and coastal areas.

The problem for a long time was that the moulded polystyrene often used for packaging large items such as appliances had very few direct replacements. It offered lightweight protection at a competitive price and so became a packaging stalwart.

Introducing Hexacomb Packaging…

But moulded polystyrene’s dominance is being challenged by an extremely innovative packaging solution. One that looks firmly set to be the next big thing when it comes to safely shipping a huge range of products... hexacomb packaging.

Hexacomb packaging is a lightweight, paper-based material that boasts extremely high levels of protection. Its unique honeycomb design (a continuous series of hexagonal cells) results in it being able to support extraordinarily heavy items. In fact, pound for pound, hexacomb packaging is stronger than steel, which is why it’s such an incredible material to use when transporting high ticket price items.

Now don’t just think that hexacomb packaging is good for simply locating an item within another box. It’s also used to create entire pallets, capable of supporting several layers of packages.

Moreover, hexacomb can be die cut into pretty much any shape or design a company needs. This makes it extremely versatile and enables businesses to use as little packaging as possible, even for irregular-shaped objects. This alone not only provides cost savings due to a reduction in the amount of packaging needed, but also affords additional protection, thanks to the hexacomb being a perfectly snug fit for the item it is housing.

Perhaps hexacomb’s most exciting feature, though, is not its incredible strength to weight ratio or the fact it is highly customisable. Rather, it is that it’s an environmentally-responsible alternative to EPS. That’s because it is made primarily from kraft paper, a renewable forest resource, and corrugated cardboard. This means it is 100% recyclable and does not crumble or shred like EPS can, clogging our natural environment and remaining an eyesore for years to come.

The next time you take delivery of a large household item, like a fridge or washing machine, check to see if hexacomb has been used to transport it safely and securely. If it has, you know why…

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