I’m frequently sent products to review – everything from kids’ DVDs with environmental messages to bottles of organic alcholic spirits (hey, someone has to do the tough reviews, right?). I really enjoy doing product reviews (and the perks that come along with them), but sometimes I’m horrified at the packaging that these environmental products are shipped in. Products have shown up on my front steps that have been packed in boxes that are far too big and overly wrapped in bubble wrap surrounded by plastic air pillows surrounded by packing peanuts (that is not an exaggeration).
When the companies that send me products to review ship their products in environmentally unfriendly packaging, they are sending more than just a product. They are unintentionally sending me a message that their company hasn’t thought about the entire environmental impact of their actions. When I get an item shipped with the earth in mind, I get a different, more positive message.
One of the many fantastic things I saw at GreenFest Philly last Sunday was a company called Green Packaging. Green Packaging sells various forms of, you guessed it, green packaging options.
Now, I think that the greenest form of packaging for individuals is reusing something you already have. When you get a package in the mail, save the packaging materials to reuse. But for businesses or even individuals who ship frequently, buying the most eco-friendly packaging makes the most sense.
Here are some of the eco-friendly packaging options I saw at Green Packaging’s exhibit table:
Prairie Eco Pak – Prairie Eco Pak is basically shredded corrugated cardboard. The cardboard comes from boxes that have already been used at least once so it’s a recycled product. It’s used as filler to protect objects in a package from breakage or shifting.
Globe Guard Inflatable Air Pillows – These air pillows that help keep the weight and cost of a package down are made from 100% recycled plastic and can be recycled after use.
Globe Guard 100% Post Consumer Waste Boxes – According to Green Packaging, most corrugated cardboard boxes are typically made from 25% – 35% recycled material. These boxes are made from 100% recycled materials.
The company is also a member of One Percent for the Planet, and they donate one percent of their annual sales to environmental charities.
Image courtesy of Flickr
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Robin, thank you so much for the nice comments about our Globe Guard product line. Our east coast distributor, Green Packaging has been doing a great job of promoting our unique products and I am very glad you connected at the fest. I really like your blog and am adding it to our blog roll at: Inside Sustainable Packaging http://blog.salazarpackaging.com/
Thank you and keep up the excellent writing.
Salazar packaging, Inc.
For anyone interested in reusing packaging materials, we sell high-quality packing tape emboldened with the text Reused Packaging!
We found that small businesses sometimes shy away from reusing packaging because they fear that customers will think poorly of the habit. However, our research showed that when customers know that you reuse packaging deliberately for environmental reasons that they will support the practice.
As the small print on the tape explains, paper and paperboard accounts for 35% of the total materials discarded in the U.S. By reusing boxes and packing envelopes, these items don’t enter the stream of solid waste headed for our landfills until they are completely worn out. So, whether you use Reused Packaging! tape or not, reusing packaging materials is an excellent way to show your environmental commitment.
I am the manufacturer of the great shredded cardboard packing material that you saw in Philadelphia through our east coast distributor, Green Packaging. Wayne is really helping spread the word about our product and (thank you!) so are you! Prairie Eco Pak helps close the loop between packaging and trash. Our product life cycle analysis (done through the FDA’s BEES Analysis at Iowa State University) was very positive too.
Our Prairie Eco Pak is great for handling heavy products or balancing the weight in a box. It’s also absorbent for folks who ship liquids. So if there is a small leak, the entire shipment won’t be ruined. For valuable breakables like antiques it’s a good choice too. Been shown to reduce damages dramatically.
We are about to roll out another green product that reuses cardboard we save from destruction and the waste stream. It’s PRAIRIEBUG FIRESTARTERS, made from reused cardboard and soy wax. I’d love to have you review that product soon if you are up for it. They are selling on AMAZON right now. They are totally natural, no chemicals. Most firestarters emit carbon monoxide and have formaldehyde and/or arsenic in them. Mmmmmmmm hand me another one of those chemical soaked marshmellows!! Great for fireplaces, wood stoves, chemnera, campsites or firepits. And they are cute too! Make great gifts for outdoors enthusiasts.
Prairie Eco Pak and
Prairie Bug Firestarters
I think it is essential for a company to use green packaging as this is not just a marketing trend.
I think green packaging is become very common these days and it has become a sign of target marketing in corrugated boxes packaging……….
Continental Packaging Solutions has introduced “green” packaging in the form of PLA. Polylactic acid (PLA) is a corn-based material that can be turned into compost at commercial composting facilities. The metamorphosis from bottle to earth-friendly compost is completed in less than 12 weeks.
Globe Guard Product line is best………….
Nice article for cardboard box replacement. We sell handmade thread items and looking to make our packing sustainable. Any suggestions for the tape used on the cardboard boxes and also any replacement for transparent plastic covers used to wrap our products to make it water proof?