Meeting the demand for green packaging

Reducing the size and weight of packaging not only helps a company’s bottom line, it also helps the environment. Berry Plastics is one of a number of companies that handles redesign projects for customers who want to make their products less bulky – last year on one project alone, they were able to shave 1 million pounds of plastic from the product’s packaging.

Walmart is helping to energize this trend. They’ve developed an online database they call a “packaging scorecard” to help suppliers figure out the net environmental impacts of additional factors such as the fuel need to make and ship packaging materials. Less bulky packaging = more on a truck = less oil used to transport your products. Walmart has a stated goal of cutting overall packaging 5 percent by 2012.

Other companies are also getting into the act –

“Nestle Waters North America, one of the nation’s biggest sellers of bottled water, has saved about 20 million pounds of paper over the past decade by using narrower labels on its bottles, company spokeswoman Jane Lazgin said.

And this spring, the maker of Poland Spring, Arrowhead, Deer Park and other brands began rolling out half-liter plastic bottles weighing 12.5 grams, about 15 percent lighter than those of competitors.

Nestle Waters expects the new bottle to reduce its use of plastic resin by 65 million pounds during 2008, the first full year of the bottle’s availability.”

You can read the Associated Press article (via the Baltimore Sun) here.

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