How Sustainable Packaging Solutions Protect Profits, Products and the Planet
How to Make Meaningful Progress at Every Stage of the Product Lifecycle
By Austin Given, Director, Packaging Design & Development for Veritiv USA/Asia
Sustainability is no longer for those who can afford it or are willing to pay for it. Companies now have a responsibility to bring innovative solutions forward to their customers, developing eco-focused, thoughtful packaging designs to help reduce the negative impact their products have on the environment. In many cases, government policies and corporate standards are demanding that businesses implement sustainable packaging practices to reduce their environmental impact. Companies are being held responsible for sourcing packaging components that can be reused in unique ways, in every phase of the lifecycle, making meaningful progress toward a more circular, sustainable economy.
Custom packaging solutions are key in every industry, including retail, automotive and industrial. Both packaging customers and consumers have set high standards for the industry. Packaging must not only stand out in the marketplace, it must meet customers’ needs and priorities, while protecting the planet, people, and local communities.
According to a recent report published by Future Market Insights, the top trends to watch in the industry include, taking a minimalistic approach to sourcing materials, being conscious of recycling opportunities when sourcing, investing in biodegradable, eco-friendly/green products, and using flexible packaging to allow customizable options that require less energy and water to manufacture.
Sustainability success in action
NextWave Plastics, a consortium of multinational technology and consumer brands, aims to divert a minimum of 25,000 tons of plastic from entering the ocean by the end of 2025. Thirteen company members, including household names, will work toward scaling the use of ocean-bound plastics; so far, the members of NextWave Plastics have already diverted more than 2,300 metric tons of ocean-bound plastic.
As for customer success stories, sustainability efforts were achieved for the launch of the Sonos Roam portable speaker. Together, Sonos and their packaging partner reimagined packaging for the Roam speaker that reflects the company’s premium brand, protects the delicate electronic contents, delivers on sustainability and delights customers.
Since Sonos strives for curbside recyclable packaging, they wanted to ensure Roam’s package fit in with this conscientious approach. Additionally, the new speaker is smaller than Sonos’ other products, opening the door for a much more intimate unboxing experience.
Roam was the first product launched with Sonos’ new package branding, which focuses on kraft gift boxes. As Roam hit the market, remarkable reviews started pouring in—not only about the speaker, but also about its packaging. People noticed how every aspect, from the individual materials to the entire unboxing experience, was carefully crafted for joy and sustainability.
The sustainable packaging market was worth around $265.9 billion in 2021 and is estimated to grow to about $358.3 billion by 2028, according to Zion Market Research. The competition is high as companies race to achieve their 2025 sustainable packaging goals, while at the same time are navigating economic uncertainty, and protecting their bottom line.
About the Author:
Austin Given is the Director of Packaging Design & Development for Veritiv USA and Asia. He has 17 years of experience as a packaging engineer, designer and department manager, with a focus on retail channel markets and global operations. As part of its mission, Veritiv Packaging Design guides its customers through a five-step, proprietary approach. This approach uniquely positions Veritiv as a pioneer in the industry. The work Austin and his team have accomplished has led to significant internal and external achievements by the company: www.veritivcorp.com/sustainability.