How New Eco-Friendly Product Packaging Can Save the World
With competition in stores and supermarkets as high as it has ever been, manufacturers are having to come up with new ideas to prove their product is better than the rest. To do so, brands need to find ways to appeal to the consumer. As climate change and global warming become bigger global concerns, shoppers are looking for eco-friendly ways to help the environment and, often, assuage their guilt. Whether or not the reason for producing eco-friendly food packaging is a cynical one, more companies are seeing the benefit of greener alternatives.
Let OneHowTo show you some of the most inventive ways brands are trying to court the eco-shopper.
The Humble Mushroom
Mushrooms are not only versatile in the kitchen, but have proved vital in providing base components in medicines and helping biologists to decontaminate water. But leading bio-materials company Evocative is finding a surprising use for mushroom roots (known as mycelium). By taking agricultural waste and introducing the mycelium, fungus grows and combines with the waste to form a material which can be dried and moulded. It works in the same way as many other types of packaging and it is a premium product with a competitive business model. It can be custom designed and is completely non-abrasive. All this and you can throw it into your home compost heap when you're done.
Surely a great product for the eco-responsible company, it is already being used by Dell computers and sure to grow in popularity in the future.
Coca-Cola Ice Bottles
Coca-Cola has one of the most recognisable brand images in the world, its history dating back to the 19th century when it was first introduced as a nerve tonic to treat anxiety. Recently, the company introduced a temporary new bottle for a limited time in countries such as Thailand, Japan and Columbia. The scheme found a clever way to prevent the need for adding ice to cool your beverage as why would you need ice when the bottle is made from it? Water is added to silicon moulds before their temperature is dropped to -25°C and they are filled with the famous soft drink. A plastic holder is wrapped around the bottle like a slap bracelet to prevent frostbite, but there is no other packaging and this hand protector can be used again.
Perhaps only used as a gimmick for now, the bottle was part of a marketing campaign helping people to keep cool in the summer. However, reducing any unnecessary packaging or making the packaging renewable is a great way to help the environment, so we may see similar ideas being used more commonly in the future.
Geami Paper Packaging
There is something so satisfying about popping bubble wrap either one by one or by twisting a big handful. Unfortunately, as fun as this can be, it is made from polyethylene film which can damage the environment in the same way as plastic bags do. This is one of the reasons why Geami Paper could be the package wrap of the future. As much to do with its design as its production, Geami uses Kraft paper made from wood certified by the Sustainable Forestry Initiative. It is cut up to make a 3D layer of individuals cells which is bonded with tissue paper for extra cushioning. It is recyclable, responsible, effective and great for compact storage.
Pop it in Your Pokito
Andrew Brooks is an entrepreneur who had a growing concern about the amount of forests which are being cut down to make the paper cups from which we drink our break time coffees. Everyday 7 million paper cups are used in the UK alone and 99% of these go straight to landfill. Rather than helping this destructive system continue, Books came up with Pokito - a reusable, portable and eco friendly cup. The cup is also handy as it is collapsible and can be opened up to different volumes depending on what type of coffee you want that day, from the smallest espresso size to an extra grande latte. It is easy to stow and seals well to make sure nothing else in your work bag gets stained. Not the only reusable coffee cup out there, but an inventive and attractive design which can help reduce our reliance on unsustainable production.
Food Packaging Made of Food
Perhaps the most complete cycle of eco-friendliness in our list is the pasta box whose outside is being made with what's inside. UK supermarket Waitrose has recently introduced a duo of gluten-free pastas, a red one made from red lentils and a green one made from peas. As the foods are produced, any waste pulses or peas which are not used in the food itself are collected to form part of the packaging in which they are sold. You can't quite eat the box as well, but it is a healthy and inventive way to buy everyday foods which can keep both us and the earth going for longer.
We hope these OneHowTo packaging solutions have helped you to find new ways to use your purchasing power to help sustainability.
If you want to know to more, check out these links on What are the Advantages of Biodegradable Products and Alternatives to Disposable Baby Diapers - Eco-Friendly Diapers.
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