In 2012, Nestle UK & Ireland became the first major confectioner to announce that its entire Easter egg packaging would become 100 percent recyclable. Nestle made this move in an effort to reduce waste and did it by transforming their existing rigid plastic packaging with a more environmentally-friendly option, paperboard packaging.
Nestle’s goal was two fold:
- To provide value to society by using fewer resources and energy from nature and producing less waste to contribute to a cleaner environment.
- To provide value to Nestle by lowering costs and becoming more environmentally sustainable.
With Nestle’s focus on reducing their carbon footprint and providing value for the community and environment, it got many companies asking this: Is sustainable packaging something we should consider?
Because there are sustainable options and ways to transform quality packaging into sustainable packaging without compromising the end product, it might be a viable option for companies looking to make the move – or it may not.
A great way to determine if this strategy might make sense is to revisit the core values and mission of your company – does sustainable packaging fit into your values and within your bottom line goals? Is your community and environmental impact something that matters to the company and the internal/external culture? If that is the case, then go ahead and explore the options. Get quotes and compare the cost impact and also very clearly understand the environmental impacts and how you can communicate that to your stakeholders.
On the other side, if sustainability isn’t a concern that is at the forefront of your business model and isn’t inherent in the company’s mission, sustainability might be a backburner consideration and could be tabled…at least for now. While this consideration should not completely vanish (we guarantee this subject will come up in the near future as retailers and government agencies try to reform standards), just be clear as to why it isn’t a priority for the company at this point in time.
For more on sustainable packaging, visit The Sustainable Packaging Coalition