Entrepreneurs who are passionate about the environment are great examples of the fact that sustainability and business go hand in hand. Product packaging is an important and immediate concern. In a consumer-driven culture, every toothpaste tube, water bottle and plastic bag is becoming a threat to the environment. Consumers must be made more aware that there are options, and that they can make better choices with every purchase.
Green Products on the Rise
There are two main considerations for manufacturers when choosing packaging material. The first is whether the choice will attract customers and convince them the product is worth buying. Second is the concomitant costs. Sustainability is a concern for some, but is rarely a top priority. This is rather unfortunate, but the tide could be changing with the advent of cost-friend and environmentally sound materials.
Nevertheless, the reality is that most companies do not concern themselves with sustainability. It is up to the consumer to decide whether sustainability is important. They can choose to patronise companies with a sustainability mission, and disregard traditional options in the process.
One of the key developments in recent years is the availability of lightweight packaging solutions which are not only easy on the pocket but offers high performance and reliability.
The material you choose should be able to protect the product from the environment and various hazards. Moreover, it has to be made from available raw materials. The materials should be easy and affordable to transport, and can be displayed for the consumer to see. The impact of the product on a consumer’s sensibilities is another important quality. All these conditions must be met. Lightweight materials that meet expectations are finding their way in the mainstream.
Types of Lightweight Packaging Materials
In the 21st century, paper can even replace metal packaging in certain situations. Paper is a simple material, but it has sophisticated properties that can be exploited. Paper is 100 percent recyclable and renewable. One of the most popular uses of paper is in honey comb packaging —a cost-effective option that borrows from the unique and efficient architecture of the beehive. The structural layout of this type of packaging allows for a number of uses. It can be used for standard cardboard applications and can be bent to conform. The construction and configuration of this material is extremely strong and reliable while still extremely lightweight. The strength-to-weight ratio is comparable to that of metals. This design offers ample protection as well. Paper products conformed to this structural scheme are not only versatile but also customisable.
Aluminium is another important material used for packaging applications where weight is an important consideration. The versatility of aluminium knows no bounds. Apart from tensile strength, its greatest quality is perhaps its weight efficiency. What other material on earth is as flexible and strong at the same time? Aluminium is 100 percent recyclable as well. The metal does not lose any of its admirable qualities no matter how many times it is reprocessed.
The packaging industry must evolve with the times. At this time, our most important concern is sustainability—the capacity of the planet to provide for our needs is finite. The world’s resources are dwindling, and we must start to make smarter and more environment friendly options.