the average UK householder throws away an estimated 400g of packaging a day
According to The Guardian the average UK householder throws away an estimated 400g of packaging every day and there is growing awareness of the problems this causes society. Packaging is in danger of being vilified as a mere waste product but its very existence facilitates the safe storage and movement of goods. A great deal of progress is being made in the areas of packaging design, materials innovation, business commitments to sustainability and consumer awareness of waste issues. Just last month for example, Unilever announced its commitment to using 100% reusable, recyclable or compostable plastic packaging by 2025 across its entire global business. https://www.unilever.com/news/press-releases/2017/Unilever-commits-to-100-percent-recyclable-plastic.html
But what of the pre-consumer packaging? It is easy to focus on the downstream operations where we see the problems created by packaging waste but what of the upstream operations? The nature of retailing today involves a hugely complicated movement of raw materials, components and goods across the globe and packaging is involved at every step of this complex journey.
Businesses can save a lot of money by focusing on how to make this process run more smoothly and there is a huge upside for the environment as packaging is optimized and handling and transport costs are brought under control. IKEA is famously quoted as “Designing things with packaging and manufacturing in mind from the start” indeed, when they worked out how to split one of their best-selling sofas into component parts they saved themselves over €1,000,000 a year in packaging, handling and transport costs. (Wall street journal)
photo courtesy of ikea
Whilst it's right to focus on the reduction of post-consumer packaging waste there is also a huge opportunity for global consumer goods manufacturers and retailers to also address waste within their own product value chain.
If you would like to ship less air and more products, download the attached infographic which demonstrates how we connect packaging to your supply chain.