Companies that sell consumables can choose post consumer recycled plastic packaging and take several other manageable measures to minimize negative environmental impact. Here are four ways for companies to reduce carbon footprint across the product life cycle, from production and packaging materials to clean energy, sustainable printing and recycling.
Reuse and Recycle Through PCR Materials
Using PCR materials is one of the best ways to reduce the use of virgin or new materials in supplement packaging. The packaging material you choose and the disposal options you provide to consumers are highly visible and can have a significant impact on the environment.
You can choose from a variety of PCR plastic and paper packaging materials. Many PCR materials can be recycled several times before going out of circulation, which can significantly reduce the number of resources used to produce new materials over a time span of years and decades.
Implement Clean Energy Technology
Corporate technology ranging from computers and devices to more energy-intensive equipment such as servers or environmental controls for facilities can have a significant environmental impact. Look for ways to implement more efficient workplace tech or source some or all of the electricity to power facilities from sustainable sources such as solar panels or wind turbines.
Outsourcing the design and production of custom stand up pouch bags to a service specializing in environmentally responsible packaging is another way to reduce the carbon footprint of a company. From offering a choice of PCR and recyclable films, sustainable printing and solventless lamination, implementing clean energy technology can have numerous benefits.
Print Packages Digitally With Compostable Ink
Printing package designs in compostable polymer-based inks with an HP Indigo 20000 printer or similar technology makes packaging more sustainable. Digital printers consume less energy and emit fewer greenhouse gasses than conventional printers. This printing process can meet or exceed the resolution of conventional packaging printing on the same materials without the need for plates.
Compostable ink on flexible packages and rollstock does not contain hazardous air pollutants and can safely break down after disposal. The option to print on demand also makes small or variable runs more affordable, which is another way to reduce waste.
Offer Store Drop Off or Take-Back Recycling
Packaging disposal is a primary source of negative environmental impact for consumables brands. After customers purchase and use products, they should be able to properly dispose of packaging to limit their own footprint and that of the company that made the product.
Companies can apply for a How2Recycle code, display a generic store drop-off recycling code on packaging or specify other disposal methods. Private recycling companies are partnering with brands to accept packaging sent in by customers. This approach can be worthwhile for brands that use packaging materials for which recycling facilities are not available in all areas.
Any type of business can take these measures to limit negative environmental impact. Clean energy upgrades and the measures necessary to participate in recycling programs can go a long way toward making operations more sustainable.