ESG and the drive towards sustainable packaging

ESG and the drive towards sustainable packaging

Today, sustainability is merging with other significant trends to drive major shifts in consumer packaging. This has likely been caused by regulatory and societal concerns about single-use packaging waste and the ESG (Environmental, Social, Governance) has become a key global effort to be adopted by businesses and individuals alike. As authorities take various actions to address this issue, fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) businesses and retailers have not been left behind. Instead, they are proactively making strong pledges to improve package sustainability and radically rethink their packaging systems.

As a result of these changes, there will be a huge influence on packaging manufacturers and their supply chain, perhaps jeopardizing the industry's viability. Luckily, the new landscape might offer considerable growth and new collaboration openings for package converters. As customer demands and regulatory restrictions grow, converters will need to be proactive in addressing environmental challenges.

Cococino Gourmet Coffee and Fudge has utilised this as an opportunity to re-engineer their packaging and turn it into something that their customers can reuse, repurpose and recycle.

Our packaging changes are driven by our consumer’s consciousness of packaging waste in the seas and landfills. As the world evolves to be more eco-friendly with everything from keep cups to e vehicles becoming more prevalent, we feel it is essential to maintain an innovative approach, ensuring how we deliver our products is in the best interest of the earth.

Aluminium Coffee pods take over 500 years to break down and with over 60 million aluminium and plastic pods being deposited into our oceans and landfill it is killing the planet as per this article by a former Nespresso boss.

Our Nespresso machine compatible coffee pods are biodegradable and compostable and so can be added to your compost or buried in the garden and will decompose over time. Further details here

This is because the growing use of single-use packing containers has imposed a significant environmental burden. At Cococino we have made it a priority to improve our impact on landfills by offering eco-friendly, recyclable packaging for our customers.

We considered that existing recycling technologies are unable to recycle a large portion of today's packaging materials. This is particularly true for multi-material packaging, which now poses a huge and unsolved recycling challenge. As a result, the waste from packaging materials becomes too much to handle.

We opted for compostable packaging as plastic packaging recycling rates are relatively low because most of them end up infiltrating into the environment as waste without being recycled. For instance, in the USA, garbage is usually handled with little leakage. However, packaging and food-service plastics have a recovery rate of around 28%. Plastic container recycling rates in Europe, were slightly higher, at around 40% compared to around 80% for paper pulp and 75–80% for metal and glass.

Sadly, only about 16% of all plastic trash is reprocessed to generate new plastics. This brings the global leakage or mismanaged disposal of all plastic material flows to around 19%. What’s more, 25% of global plastic waste is incinerated while 40% is disposed of in landfills. This implies that these materials go to waste, even if most plastics could be easily recycled and reused instead of being thrown away

In the past, FMCG businesses and retailers have mostly concentrated on fast wins, such as reducing packaging costs. However, strong material innovations by substrate manufacturers like us have helped in transforming the packaging industry. These changes have favoured the use of transformative packages and biodegradable products.

Packaged goods makers and merchants, on the other hand, have begun to make commitments to reduce packaging waste in recent years. This is because almost every company in the top 100 FMCG firms has made big statements and commitments to drive sustainability in the future years. These commitments are focused on these 3 areas of activity:

  • Ensuring full recyclability and a significantly higher degree of recyclable materials which accounts for 60% of undertakings.
  • Reduction in total plastics usage which makes 26% of the undertakings
  • Advancement and endorsement of change in the use of plastic wrapping make 14% of the commitment.

 With these initiatives, there will be a significant shift in the innovation of packaging methods. Apart from reducing package waste, many packaging firms are now concentrating on going green in their operations. This helps to improve internal energy efficiency and waste weight minimisation which is a huge concern. More importantly, a lot of work on applied innovation for sustainable packaging products across substrates has already begun and we at Cococino are proud to be a part of it.