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Can Sustainable Packaging Really Cut Costs?

Michael Wilson | Dec 1, 2014

Creating more sustainable packaging is one of the most prominent challenges facing today’s shipping and packaging industry. Most supporters of sustainable packaging believe ...

sustainable packaging costs

Creating more sustainable packaging is one of the most prominent challenges facing today’s shipping and packaging industry. Most supporters of sustainable packaging believe strongly in this type of packaging because it has a less destructive impact on the environment.Packaging made from natural materials generally degrades more quickly and does not interfere with plants and animals.

However, what some professionals in the industry and members of the general public do not realize is that sustainable packaging can also help companies shrink their packaging budgets. For businesses looking to save money on packaging while still protecting their goods, there are several reasons that eco-friendly packaging might be the best answer available.

You may also be interested in this: Shrink & Stretch Film: Which Is The Better Choice For Product Packaging?

Types of Cost-Saving Sustainable Packaging

While several kinds of sustainable packaging are still being developed today, there are a few popular types that have become especially popular. For example, one type of plastic packaging is commonly made from polylactic acids, which can be derived from organic, renewable sources like sugarcane and corn. Polylactic acid-based packaging is biodegradable, unlike traditional plastic packaging made from petroleum-based sources.

Another common variety of biodegradable packaging comes from dairy products. These packaging materials are usually derived from the proteins of dairy and other dairy byproducts, including whey and casein. This type of sustainable packaging is valuable because it is made from natural substances and might even be edible in some cases.

Although there are plenty of options available for companies that are looking to adopt more environmentally conscious packaging, there is a common misconception amongst many CFOs and business professionals that switching to sustainable materials will cost a company more.

How Sustainable Packaging Can Save Money

Environmentally-friendly, biodegradable packaging can help companies cut down on their business expenses in several ways. First, it is often not necessary to use as much packaging when you use biodegradable packaging options. This means that shipments can be lighter and less expensive to ship commercially to distributors and retail stores. For businesses that have a large-scale supply chain, even a small amount of savings per shipment can add up to a substantial cost savings.

Want more on sustainable packaging? Read this: 4 Sustainable Packaging Trends You Need To Know About

Another financial benefit of biodegradable packaging is that shipments can be optimized for transportation. Inbound Logistics reports that packaging made to make transportation as effective as possible is very important for companies considering sustainable packaging options, since it allows businesses to reduce their costs by lowering the amount of space wasted in cargo areas that are made to hold goods.

Improved Revenues from Consumer Preference

One of the critical ways that eco-friendly packaging is able to help companies save money is not by actually saving money, but by bringing them more revenue from customers who are increasingly looking for their suppliers to use sustainable packaging methods. Research by Nielsen shows that two-thirds of all global consumers would prefer to buy products from a company that has implemented socially responsible policies, such as environmentally-friendly packaging or other forms of corporate responsibility.

Also consider that many of the world’s largest organizational buyers require their suppliers to use a certain percentage of green products. Government departments, major food distributors and producers, and manufacturing companies frequently require the companies they do business with to maintain an acceptable percentage of green products. By switching to packaging that is more sustainable, you can open your company up to winning more business from this type of buyer.

Moving towards a more sustainable type of packaging brings lots of value with it for both the companies making the switch and the general public. It is important for your company to explore switching to environmentally-friendly packaging so that you can fully understand the benefits of making this change. 

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