If you’ve been to your local recycling center, you know how much packaging waste is deposited into local recycling centers and the impact you can have as a consumer. Some states charge an initial deposit on glass bottles, plastic containers, and some plastic packaging. You, as the consumer, are then required to recycle those containers to get that deposit back. That helps to encourage healthy recycling behavior as consumers.
The general rule over the last few decades has been that the affluence of a country determines the volume of packaging waste. As the economic growth of the United States consumer has continually increased over the last few decades, so did the packaging waste. Between 1995 and 2000, the amount of municipal waste increased exponentially as U.S. economic conditions improved. During that five year window, the two concepts changed their correlation. They in fact “decoupled”, and economic growth continued on while municipal waste tended to level off and slightly decrease.
How Did Manufacturing Help Change The Course?
The manufacturing sector fostered change in the types of packaging from bulky cardboard and disposable plastic to plastics that can be recycled or reused. Previously packaging was mostly plastics like cellophane, cardboard with wax covering or printing, or glass and metal that couldn’t be reused or recycled. Over time, packaging has evolved into plastic packaging that is lighter, more cost effective, and recyclable, bio-degradable or reusable. As an entrepreneur, a new start-up, or a dedicated manufacturer, you have the ability to evaluate your packaging and potentially opt for eco-friendly plastic packaging.
How Much Can You Save?
Using this calculator you can estimate how much of a savings you could generate if you changed packaging to increase your profitability while decreasing municipal generated waste.
Suppose you throw away 1,000 pounds of waste packaging material every month. That will most likely include glass, metal, and paper products (paper, cardboard, etc.) that can’t be recycled or reused in future shipments or products. For that 1,000 pounds of waste, switching to plastic packaging that can be recycled or reused would save approximately 778 pounds of waste or 78%. That can drop your manufacturing waste significantly in a year, and also potentially decrease operating costs.
If you use 1,000 pounds of containers every month to ship your products, you would be able to decrease your shipping weight by 688 pounds of waste or 69% utilizing plastic packaging over metal containers, cardboard, or glass. Utilizing dedicated plastic packaging may increase your parts per package or shipping container by better nesting parts together with a packaging redesign. That can decrease your frequency of shipments, decrease the volume of packaging needed, and may reduce your shipping costs overall. You can ship more efficiently and save operating and logistics costs to increase your product profitability.
Through creative packaging and plastic usage, you can have net effects on your bottom line. SEA-LECT Plastics excels at design, tooling, manufacturing, and has packaging and logistic specialists that know how to create packaging to minimize waste while increasing part shipments. We are the turnkey manufacturer you need to organize your next new product launch or from concept to packaged product. We have a complete turn-key option for your product. When you’re ready to discuss your current or next project, contact us at email@example.com or give us a call at (425) 339-0288.
Matthias Poischbeg was born and raised in Hamburg, Germany. Matt moved to Everett, Wash., after finishing his bachelor’s degree in business in 1995 to work for Sea-Dog Corporation, a manufacturer, and distributor of marine and rigging hardware established in 1923.
In 1999, Matt took over the reins at Sea-Lect Plastics Corporation, a sister company of Sea-Dog and a manufacturer of plastic injection molded products with an in-house tool & die shop. Matthias Poischbeg is also a contributor to Grit Daily.