We have successfully developed sustainable packaging solutions at Parkside for almost 70 years. And thanks to our team of packaging experts, innovative technology, R&D, and supply chain collaboration, we feel it’s safe to say we know a thing or two about designing packaging for the environment.
Here are five tried and tested ways to achieve sustainability through your packaging:
- Packaging designed for the waste hierarchy will always be a sustainability winner
Incorporating the rules of reduce, remove, and/or recycle into packaging design will undoubtedly support many packaging sustainability goals. By reducing the amounts of virgin plastics used, removing plastic altogether, or utilising plastic in a way that it can be recycled and used again and again, manufacturers will lower the demand for finite fossil fuels and ultimately produce less waste. For instance, a package redesigned from a complex non-recyclable laminate to a recyclable mono-polymer film can improve recycling rates and help divert waste from landfill. Other options include eliminating plastic as a material choice and opting for a viable alternative like our paper recyclable solutions. What’s not to love?
- Be smart about resources
Utilising post-consumer recycled (PCR) materials is one way to boost the sustainability of your pack, as are renewable resources. Renewable packaging, such as our Park2Nature range, produced from PEFC-certified plant-based renewable resources and fully accredited for home and industrial composting, can be utilised for various pack formats from pouches, flow wraps and lidding films—a popular choice with ethical brands and consumers.
- Product protection is king
It’s no secret that the primary function of packaging is to protect the product – and all self-respecting packaging designers begin by exploring the fundamental product requirements. What’s this got to do with sustainability? Designing a pack with outstanding product protection can extend shelf-life, reduce damage/spoilage and ultimately support the effort to reduce food waste, which notably produces at least three times the GHG emissions than that generated from global aviation*. Packs such as our innovative reclosable, resealable and portion-control solutions further elevate the sustainable design by extending the life of the opened product. It’s a win-win!
- Lightweight packaging is a heavyweight in sustainability
Like product protection and food waste reduction, lightweight packaging designs offer hefty sustainability benefits. Lightweight packs can replace heavier, bulky items and reduce a product’s carbon footprint, thus saving energy in transit and throughout the supply chain. Flexible packaging is inherently lightweight and robust; Parkside’s lightweight solutions offer puncture resistance, oxygen barrier performance, easy open and consumer convenience features, and much more without compromising on performance. Lightweighting is also a naturally cost-efficient solution, a particular consideration during these challenging economic times.
- Design for reuse by blending existing and new technologies
Packaging designers and producers have embraced innovation to move away from single-use packaging in a welcome move towards the circular economy. However, existing reusable and refillable solutions such as glass jars, bottles, tins and tubs have been used for decades and offer sturdy and unparalleled product protection.
If looked after, reusable containers can last a lifetime. When used with a lightweight and recyclable refill pack, such as a reclosable pouch, the product can be transported from the manufacturer to the supermarket and to cupboard in a complementary cost-efficient, low carbon and recyclable solution.
Are you feeling inspired to redesign your packaging for improved sustainability? At Parkside, we often say there is no silver bullet to sustainability, only well-matched products and packaging solutions maximised for both product and environmental performance. No matter how you choose to design for the environment, the Parkside Sustainable 7: reduce, remove, recycle, renew, waste reduction, reuse, and carbon footprint will ensure your product and environmental performance needs are met. Contact us to discuss your needs.
*World Resource Institute’s CAIT Climate Data Explorer