12. September 2019 | Social | via


Sustainable packaging as a competitive advantage. (Credit:

Sustainable packaging. According to Ben Conrad’s article on two words that don’t always go hand-in-hand. Packaging waste is a massive global problem, and one which your business probably doesn’t want to contribute to! So, knowing how to ‘keep it green’ in your packaging design is the key to being a more responsible eCommerce retailer. Sustainability is a growing focal point within discussions of Corporate Social Responsibility. So, sustainable packaging is one of the most actionable ways you can demonstrate your commitment. 

The environmental impact of packaging waste

Plastics play a huge role in the lives of consumers. It’s hard to keep track of how often we encounter plastic on a daily basis, especially in retail and food packaging. In particular, most of the things we buy come in plastic packaging. So, it’s hardly surprising that the packaging industry is responsible for 40% of plastic pollution in the world – and a third of all household waste. That’s terrible! 

Unfortunately, the eCommerce industry is one of the biggest culprits. This is due not only to the use of plastic packaging but to the unfortunate reality of ‘over-packaging.’ We’ve all had the experience of an item arriving and filling up our living room with plastic. We’ve dubbed this experience the “Russian doll” method, often used in order fulfillment: a pre-boxed item is placed in a second box with a large amount of filler, creating excess packaging waste. 

At its current rate of expansion, eCommerce will contribute more and more to this issue over time. Global eCommerce sales are forecast to hit $4.9 trillion by 2021, and will account for almost a fifth of all retail sales. If green packaging solutions aren’t adopted, the amount of plastic waste going to landfills will increase drastically.