6 PRINCIPLES TO
PRODUCE SUSTAINABLE & RESPONSIBLE PACKAGING FOR YOUR BRAND
Follow the 6 principles | Print the certification on your packaging | Educate your customer via the QR code
PRINCIPLE 1 : MONO MATERIAL
For both the end user and the converter the most efficient recycling relies on only one material kind in packaging (E.G carrier bags only made of paper including the paper rope handles or make a wood only lift off lid & base rigid wooden with a cork fitments).
If materials are going to be mixed; make sure they are easy to separate out to aid the recycling process.
Make the claim of being mono-material/ use this logo to inform the end user of the packaging credentials.
PRINCIPLE 4 : PETROLEUM FREE
PET – Used for polyester (carrier bag hands) and plastic water bottles
PE-HD – Used for plastic bag
PVC - the most toxic plastic and used to make fake leather products
PE-LD – Used in laminations and plastic wraps
PP – Used for making VAC trays and clamshell boxes
EVA – Used for foams and generally not recyclable.
ABS – Hard wearing injection moulded plastic
If plastic is essential for non-food packaging, there are sustainable options. Biomass plastics made from sustainable corn, bamboo or soya for up to 100% content (or partially mixed with petroleum/ oil). Plants mixed with starch and sugars, fermented, mixed with lactic acid creates the biomass. This can be moulded successfully then recycled/ reused or industrialised compost incineration or disposed of using thermo recycling.
PRINCIPLE 2 : SUSTAINABLY SOURCED
Check where materials were made and by whom. Look for logos and understand what they mean. Investigate further if there appears to be uncertainties over claims (E.G check source material has a certified audit trail and do not contain contaminates, check levels of water and chemicals used to convert materials to commercial products, ensure production is REACH* compliant with minimal/ no impact of by-products and waste on human, animal and plant life and remember to verify bio-crops are not at the expense of more critical local requirements such as diverted food sources or natural wild-life habitats. *REACH - Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals
PRINCIPLE 5 : REDUCED WASTE
Avoid excessive outer and gift packaging that the end user has to deal with. Consider the user experience from their waste disposal point of view.
At the development stage, keep fitments simple and singular and integrated of one material where possible, reduce transit componentry except where absolutely necessary (E.G question whether polybags, internal transit corners, packing layers, tissue, foams, sleeves, inners or outer cartons are all critical part of safe transit).
When quoting, ask for best-fit dimensions that fit onto standard paper roller and sheet sizes and compromise where necessary (E.G bag turnover dimensions).
PRINCIPLE 3 : MANUFACTURED RESPONSIBLY
Check factory details of where your products are made, notwithstanding that each factory should be taken on merit. There are no standards automatically linked to specific countries.
A good starting point is ISO14001 certification, specifying requirements for an effective environmental management system in manufacturing.
These facilities must prove they use water more efficiently and a certain amount of green energy.
PRINCIPLE 6 : DEGRADABLE
Adj., (of a substance or object) capable of being decomposed by bacteria or other living organisms and thereby avoiding pollution.
Check credentials carefully. Many mono untreated materials will naturally degrade (E.G paper, corks, certain metals types) but most packaging requires additional conditions to those found naturally in the garden or at sea.
“We have fantastic feedback from our customers. They love how transparent we are and appreciate the efforts we have made to make our packaging sustainable ”