Hardly a day goes by without a news story about climate change. With the growing awareness about global warming and the hazards non-biodegradable waste poses on our environment, an increasing number of people is turning towards green solutions.
Recycling, upcycling and using biodegradable materials are more than just trends now. People are consciously integrating them in their lifestyle. They are avoiding goods packaged in material that would not decompose or be recycled.
Why should businesses switch to eco-friendly packaging?
One major reason has already been mentioned above i.e. people are avoiding goods packaged in non-eco-friendly material. In a market where most of the consumers are not only more aware of the problem but also actively want to be part of the solution, eco-friendly packaging material is the way forward. As a producer, you might have your concerns over the budget and time but actually, there are advantages that make the shift worthwhile.
Besides reducing your carbon footprint by using eco-friendly materials, you are creating a space for your label where it stands out in a market swarming with brands. People now actively search for brands that support sustainability and eco-friendly practices. They develop loyalty for the brand, share their experiences with their friends and families which in turn gives you more customers.
Packaging – An Effective Marketing Tool
The environmentally-conscious consumer will not take your empty words. They would need something more tangible to believe that you are part of the solution-not the problem. This new eco-friendly packaging is an impactful marketing strategy in itself that many businesses are benefiting from. The packaging box your consumer is holding is 100% biodegradable, it’s made of 80% recycled paper/plastic, it will decompose over 10/15 years, it is compostable, etc. This little piece of information about your packaging will establish a brand image a pro-environment consumer can trust.
Some brands are even printing upcycling ideas on the packaging boxes. It attracts consumers who are spending time in the supermarkets or online looking for eco-friendly brands.
The most common perception about switching to eco-friendly packaging is that it can be hard on your budget. This is not the case. It, in fact, is quite budget friendly. For starters, recycled materials are cheaper.
To begin the change, you do not need to make the shift in one day or in one go. Do it gradually and complete the switch as you go along.
- Use packaging that fits, use minimum packaging material for your merchandise. Use smaller packaging boxes that fit the size of the product. Unnecessarily voluminous packages are neither environment friendly nor budget friendly.
- Customized packaging results in a considerable cut in manufacturing costs. Also, the package will weigh less bringing down the shipping costs.
- Use one box instead of individual boxes to pack multiple items for one destination. Minimalist packaging stands as “one solution for numerous problems”,it’s cost effective, lesser debris going to the landfill, hence, reducing your carbon footprint. Something that environmentally-conscious consumers appreciate and the number of such consumers is continuously increasing.
- As the demand for these recyclable and recycled packaging increases, their production will go up bringing the cost of these materials down.
- Aligning with Government Policies
- As part of the battle against climate change, the governments are introducing policies that compel businesses to reduce their carbon footprint. It is only a matter of time before using eco-friendly packaging will be a compulsion by law. Investing in this now, will save you both time and money in addition to making you compliant, when these policies come into effect with full force.
- What options do we have in eco-friendly packaging?
- Plant-based plastic bags- algae and cactus are being used to make plastic bags that will decompose in both soil and water.
- banana, lotus, coconut and palm leaves are used as a packaging material in some countries.
- Cardboard- this old, humble friend we have seen almost everywhere around us growing up is still a trusted choice for eco-friendly and sustainable packaging. They are organic, sustainable, can be recycled and easily reused. On top of that, they are biodegradable. They are an excellent choice for custom boxes as they can be easily customized to different shapes and sizes. Depending on the purpose, you can choose from single corrugated, double corrugated and triple corrugated cardboard sheets. Their durability is often underestimated. They are lightweight and yet provide sturdy support and protection. Double and triple corrugated cardboard packaging is extremely resistant to the blows and sharp piercings, making it a brilliant choice for shipping fragile merchandise.
Cloth bags- these friends from the past are also back to save the day. They are easily available in all supermarkets to carry your groceries. Instead of single use plastic bags, cloth bags are a preferred choice for most consumers now. They are easy to carry, they can bear load, can be washed and reused for a long time. And best of all, they would not be a threat to the environment when eventually disposed of.
So, if we look at it, eco-friendly packaging makes everyone a winner. All the reservations and doubts that this packaging entails, are due to the lack of familiarity with its benefits and the ease of adaptation. Besides, new ideas can be scary and overwhelming. They do bring apprehensions with them because they are new, they are not the norm. The only way to address these reservations and apprehensions, is to familiarise yourself with them. Get in touch with an expert or a company that can help you by manufacturing eco-friendly packaging boxes.