As consumers become increasingly environmentally conscious, companies must prioritize sustainability. Sustainable packaging enhances a company’s reputation as a socially responsible and environmentally conscious brand. It could also help increase customer loyalty, attract new customers, and improve the brand’s image.
Packaging waste significantly contributes to environmental pollution and climate change. Switching to sustainable packaging reduces greenhouse gas emissions and environmental impact.
Some countries implement regulations and policies to minimize waste and promote sustainable packaging. Businesses that fail to comply with these regulations may face penalties or reputational damage.
How To Improve Your Brand With Sustainable Packaging
Now that you know why making the switch is crucial, it’s time to learn how to adopt an eco-friendlier approach.
The following is an eight-step guide to finding suitable sustainable packaging for your brand:
1. Assess Your Current Packaging
Assessing your existing packaging is essential. Doing so lets you identify areas where you can improve your environmental impact. It’s best to consider several factors: material usage, waste generation, carbon footprint, and supply chain sustainability.
If your current packaging is made of materials with a high carbon footprint, switching to sustainable packaging materials like recycled paper can help reduce your environmental impact. But what if your organization produces products with fragile components that require extra protection during shipping?
In that case, consider optimizing your packaging design to reduce material usage. You can learn more by reading websites like www.packagingworld.co.uk, which provide information on sustainable packaging materials. These resources could help you decide what option is best for your products.
2. Set Sustainability Goals
Once you figure out that your current packaging isn’t sustainable, it would be wise to set goals. In that way, you can establish a clear direction and track progress toward more sustainable packaging solutions.
As you set these goals, using key performance indicators (KPIs) is essential. For example, a KPI for reducing packaging waste could be the percentage of packaging materials that are recyclable or biodegradable.
Then, consider prioritizing key sustainability issues that may be most relevant to your operations and stakeholders. Your KPIs should be specific and measurable to make your goal more achievable. For instance, aiming to minimize packaging waste by 30% within two years is a suitable measurement.
3. Research Sustainable Materials
Now that you have specific sustainability goals, it’s time to look for sustainable materials.
- Biodegradable Plastics: They can break down into natural elements with the help of carbon dioxide, water, and biomass. These materials can reduce waste and pollution by decomposing.
- Recycled Paper: Used paper products are processed to create new paper. Recycling paper minimizes the need to cut down trees for paper production, saves energy and water, and reduces waste.
- Plant-Based Materials: They’re made from renewable resources such as corn, sugar cane, or bamboo. These materials are biodegradable, reducing carbon emissions and energy consumption compared to traditional plastic materials.
Meanwhile, businesses should consider several factors when researching sustainable materials, such as environmental impact, performance, cost, and availability. For example, some biodegradable plastics may not be suitable for all types of products. Others may require specific conditions for proper decomposition.
Similarly, recycled paper may be less durable than traditional paper, and plant-based materials may be more expensive than their counterparts. So, remember these factors to determine what’s suitable for your brand.
4. Test The New Packaging Materials
After finding a suitable packing material, you may now start testing it. For instance, suppose you plan to launch a new laundry detergent using new Eco-Box packaging made from 60% less plastic and 30% less water.
Testing the new material for performance, safety, and environmental sustainability is best. It’s also essential to include factors like biodegradability, compostability, and recyclability. Testing may also involve toxicology and compliance testing. These procedures ensure that your Eco-Box meets the required standards.
5. Optimize Packaging Design
Optimizing your packaging design is best if your packaging material suits your products. For example, a minimalistic packaging design may be your best option if you own a clothing line. It can reduce the packaging’s material usage and waste generation. You can also consider using recycled paper and soy-based inks in your packages.
The same idea applies if you operate a circular packaging platform. Partnering with manufacturers can help you design reusable packaging. It should be durable and reusable. You can also collaborate with retailers to collect used packaging for recycling purposes.
6. Collaborate With Suppliers
If you already have a packaging design, it’s time to source sustainable materials from vendors. This step includes creating a list of local suppliers known for their quality products and environmentally friendly practices.
If you need corrugated cardboard boxes, you can look for a company that uses eco-friendly processes like waterless or digital printing. If you own an online store, you may collaborate with a supplier who develops sustainable packages for orders. It could help your brand reduce its carbon footprint while enhancing your brand reputation.
7. Communicate The Change
After preparing your sustainable packaging initiative, it’s time to communicate your ideas to your stakeholders. You can create a plan to show that you’re committed to sustainability. You could attract environmentally conscious customers as you develop this initiative. You can also include it in your marketing strategy to improve your brand’s image.
8. Monitor Progress
As you actively use sustainable materials for packaging, monitoring your progress is crucial. If your company commits to reusing 100% of your packaging, consider tracking progress using various metrics.
It’s best if you collaborate with your suppliers and customers. In doing so, you might gain valuable insights into improving your sustainability practices.
Switching to sustainable packaging is becoming increasingly crucial for businesses looking to enhance their brand reputation. Adopting this initiative might help you gain the support of stakeholders actively promoting eco-friendly practices.
You may face challenges, from evaluating your current packaging to communicating the change to your consumers. But with a systematic approach, you could successfully transition to sustainable packaging and strengthen your commitment to sustainability. As a result, you might benefit from positive brand equity.
Arnab Dey is a passionate blogger who loves to write on different niches like technologies, dating, finance, fashion, travel, and much more.