5 Sustainable Packaging Solutions for ECommerce Businesses

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No matter the advancement, you can see more people today becoming more eco-friendly and more businesses getting into sustainable practices for quite some time.

From the moment people felt the impact of past tolerance or unconscious neglect of the environment, more and more companies shifted to highly innovative practices, especially in their packaging.

So, it’s best to look at these practices or solutions as the future and rising technologies in the packing industry. 

Today’s Sustainable Packaging Solutions

1. Embracing the Biodegradables

It hasn’t been long since people knew that traditional plastics (not only in packaging) can take hundreds of years to decompose, harming the earth and, of course, everything in it. Luckily, people’s desperation led to the discovery of biodegradable solutions, especially in packaging.

This discovery of biodegradable or compostable materials like mushroom, cornstarch, seaweed, palm leaf, and bagasse in packaging has become a welcome buzz that brought people many alternatives. Since these biodegradable materials are designed for decomposition, you can maximize them in your eCommerce fulfillment needs. 

They can be your efficient pick-and-pack solutions for food and other consumable items, helping you be sustainable and eco-responsible. You can even add some instructions on its label about how to use it best afterward, like composting suggestions or using it as a soil alternative in home gardens.

2. Edible Packing in Packaging the Edibles

Apart from biodegradables, you’d be amazed that there are already famous packing alternatives that you can consume along with their contents. This fascinating innovation has effectively overturned how people look at packaging, such as: 

Rice Paper Films

A product and ingenuity of Monosol, the dissolvable (and ingestible) rice paper wrappers aim to reduce wastage in food or drink products.

Milk Protein Coatings

Known to be 100% biobased and produced by Lactips designs, these milk protein (consumable) sheets are now used as an alternative to oil-based plastics. These packaging solutions are made from processed casein protein, the one giving milk its white color.

Fruit-Based Sheets

One of Apeel Sciences’ discoveries, these edible product covers are made from fruit and vegetable formulations. They can help extend your fresh produce’s lifespan by avoiding oxidation or decaying moisture loss.

These edible packaging entries are not only innovative but also quite helpful in avoiding waste and other non-compostable materials while you wrap or pack items. Imagine eating the wrappers along with your food; they can indeed give you that awesome consumer experience every time.

3. Packing with Plantable Options

Merging sustainability with utility, many companies have introduced plantable packaging solutions so people not only receive biodegradable packages but get to plant the packaging (after it’s used) and become participants in the green revolution for a more sustainable and greener tomorrow.

As the packaging, or seed paper, itself is decomposable and deconstructs into the soil, it reduces waste (if not zero-waste). Then, it ushers the growth of the seeds embedded therein, like:

  • The seed-infused wrappings by Bloomin Seed Paper can grow into wildflowers, promoting greenery and biodiversity.
  • The herb seeds in the soap packaging of Pangea Organics allow patrons to plant and grow useful herbs (often herbs) after each product packing use.
  • The seeds in Vivobarefoot shoe boxes invite their recipients to grow trees and become more environment-conscious. 

These seeds in today’s packaging solutions are testaments of people’s commitment to eliminating waste, giving back their due to the environment, and encouraging more people into their eco-consciousness movement.

4. Wrapping with Reusable Fabrics

Some cultures have already practiced reuse and recycling long before the environment protested people’s environmental neglect. 

Many fabric packaging styles have been used for ages, and it’s no wonder why their use is highlighted today as the eco-friendly alternative to single-use plastics, like:

The Furoshiki Cloth

gift wrapping without paper

These wrapping styles were originally inspired by the traditional wrapping cloth of Japan, with brands like Wrappr maximizing its beautiful designs. These furoshiki wraps are used indefinitely as a unique and reliable wrapper for gifts, groceries, and other items for sustainability with a dash of Japanese culture. 

The Beeswax Wraps

Honey Bee Good beeswax food wrap designs
Image via Honey Bee Good

Don’t worry; bees are not included in these wrappers made by Bee’s Wrap. They use organic, washable, reusable, and biodegradable cotton coated with beeswax for food covers and packing.

Using Aplat Culinary Totes

With reusability in mind, these totes were designed using organic cotton and guaranteed to last longer for more usage. They’re specially tailored to carry home-cooked meals, groceries, and other culinary needs. 

By opting for these reusable packings, wraps, and totes, people participate and contribute to the conservation movement of Mother Earth. Anyway, they not only speak of fantastic designs but are also sturdy and efficient, replacing plastics and saving the environment. 

5. Maximizing Smart Packaging

You can see these smart packaging solutions integrating tech to track environmental conditions to make sure products are safe and without much wastage, like:

Labels by Insignia Technologies

Insignia Freshtag

These labels can change color to warn or inform you about the food’s shelf life, reducing food waste by keeping tabs on product freshness. They can also notify you when it’s time to consume them to prevent food waste.

The Thin Film Electronics ASA

It’s a packaging solution that offers smart coverings equipped with NFC or Near Field Communication tags. These packaging have “info-tags” on which consumers can verify product safety and integrity through their smartphones.

The Avery Dennison’s TT Sensor Plus

This packing option has a label that monitors, records, and communicates the product’s temperature data to stakeholders. They’re particularly needed for the safety of perishable goods, where ensuring better temperature makes sure food and medical products are kept safe and available for their intended use.

These tags and sensors can be particularly effective in providing vital information about packed perishables to make sure they’re all safe for consumption upon reaching their end users or consumers.

  • Luke Rooks

    Luke is a passionate environmental advocate based in upstate New York. When he's not sharing tips on sustainability and wellness, you can find him hiking with his dog, Max.

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