Archive for the ‘Recyclying’ Category

A Creative Way to Reuse DVD Cases

Wednesday, December 12th, 2012

The cheapest and most beneficial way to be more sustainable and eco-friendly is by reusing products and their packaging for things other than their intended use. Just like the young couple that used jewel CD cases as simple picture frames, one 4th grade teacher writes in her blog about a simple way to reuse DVD cases. Not only did this purpose extend the life of a once wasted product, but it saved her a lot of money in her first year of teaching. This first year 4th grade teacher wanted to use individual dry-erase boards for activities in class, but couldn’t afford to purchase one for every student. That’s when her sister gave her the idea to reuse old DVD cases as white boards by turning the printed insert inside out. The clear overlay allows for any dry erase marker to be easily wiped away. The teacher asked all of her students to each bring in an old DVD case which, let’s be honest, we all have a DVD case we don’t use anymore. Each student was able to choose their favorite colored construction paper insert to make the board more colorful and fun. The end result; a cheap (practically free) dry erase board for each of her students, and since they were DVD cases, the students were able to store whatever papers or extra inserts they needed for class activities.


read more of this teacher’s blog

Increasing Demand for Post-Consumer Recycled Plastics

Wednesday, December 5th, 2012

According to a new study from the Freedonia Group, “Recycled Plastics”, theU.S.demand for post-consumer recycled plastic is forecast to rise 6.5% per year, meaning in 2016 it is projected to be up to 3.5 billion pounds. This demand is driven by a number of factors, one being a growing emphasis on sustainability among packaging and consumer product manufacturers. The advancements in processing and sorting technologies make it more attainable by allowing a wider variety of plastic to be recycled into high quality resins. Along with these factors supporting the movement are the federal, state, and local governments providing a significant boost to recycled plastic collection, processing, and demand. Other study results showed that PET and high-density polyethylene were the two leading resins used in recycled plastic products in 2011 which accounted for over 70% of demand, fueled by rising recycled content in beverage bottles and thermoformed containers. The most rapid growth is forecast for recycled low-density polyethylene. Also on the horizon is the increase in recycled polypropylene collection volumes and improved processing techniques which improve the quality of the resin.

A Great Way to Reuse!

Wednesday, November 28th, 2012

It seems as if printed/developed pictures are becoming a thing of the past. However, there will always be a demand for nicely printed and framed pictures in our homes and workplaces. A young couple from Virginia posted in their blog/website a unique way to have nicely framed pictures by using their used jewel CD cases. They express that ever since they started using the increasingly popular photography tool, Instagram, they have wanted to find a fun way to showcase their family photos. They realized after ordering the printouts of their photos, with a small trim these photos fit snugly into the front of a jewel case. Not only does this solution protect photos as they hang, but should a problem arise these easy-to-come-by picture frames cost less than a dollar to replace. Not only is this an economically friendly craft to spruce up your home, but it is a great way to re-use a product that would inevitably sit in a landfill otherwise.


Read more about Young House Love

Herman Miller Awarded for Sustainable Solutions

Tuesday, October 30th, 2012

At PACK EXPO in Chicago, Herman Miller was announced the first winner of the Excellence in Reusable Packaging Award. They won this award with their use of reusable packaging for their shipping and handling of a component of a chair for and assembly line. This adaptation saved the company $46,000 annually in material and labor. Herman Miller has been utilizing sustainable packaging solutions within the company for over 20 years and is actively exploring these eco-friendly alternatives that saves them money and more importantly, the environment. The part was being shipped into Herman Miller Greenhouse in corrugated boxes that would be re-used several times before being recycled.




By switching to the reusable solution, the company has gained the following measurable outcomes:
• Saved 63 minutes per day in handling of the parts; this equates yearly to 266 hours
• Using 4,300 fewer boxes saving 24,645 pounds of corrugated per year
• Achieved a combined material and labor saving of $46,000
• Eliminated the need for two warehouse skid locations
• Eliminated movement of heavy boxes from skid to roller conveyor by a material handler, and eliminated need to cut them open with a knife
• Eliminated handling of boxes by part supplier

Sustainable Packaging Solutions– PackExpo 2012

Wednesday, October 10th, 2012

To become a reputably sustainable manufacturing business, a lot of planning and research goes into what decisions to make to lead to the transformation. Packagin manufacturers interested in making these changes should be aware of the upcoming Pack Expo held in Chicago October 28-31. Not only does this event show examples and give networking opportunities for those striving for sustainability, but the expo provides infinite resources for environmentally friendly materials and energy efficient equipment. The event is for general packaging, however with the growing need for green solutions the companies that implement green initiatives are denoted in the exhibitor list, on the website and at the show itself. The conference that is being held also addresses the issue of sustainability and focuses on green initiatives that organizations can take. The industry partners helping to organize the content of this conference include: The Alliance for Innovation and Excellence, The Institute of Packaging Professionals, The Packaging Association of Canada and the Reusable Packaging Association. To learn more about the event and the full conference schedule, visit


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“Green Guides” Revised

Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued final revisions to “Green Guides”. These guides are set in place to ensure that claims made by companies and marketers promoting “green” or eco-friendly products live up to a set standard.

The revisions to the FTC’s guides are not invented by the organization. They reflect a wide range of public input, taking into consideration consumer and industry comments on previous drafts. The “Green Guides” include revisions to previous versions as well as new additions and developments.

The goal of updating these standards is to ensure that the environmentally conscious consumer is getting what they paid for and to level the playing field for businesses that are honest in their eco-friendly claims. The update also modified categories of recent developments in “green” manufacturing. Some of the new sections include; certifications and approvals, non-toxic claims, renewable claims, and free-of claims. In return, the consumer should see a more honest representation of products that are truly considered “green”.


Read more at packagingdigest

Using Packaging as the Product

Wednesday, September 26th, 2012

Lite2Go’s new product uses smart packaging to its advantage. For eco-friendly innovation, this product eliminates the need for wasteful packaging altogether. The packaging that the product comes in plays  an integral role as its external package doubles as the lamp shade itself. The only part of the product that would be considered waste are the instructions and label- which of course are made of recyclable material and use environmentally friendly inks. By using product packaging as part of the product, this emphasizes the importance of a signature and classic look that will last as long as the product itself and not head straight for the garbage can.




More info here

Go Green- Be a Post-Consumer!

Wednesday, September 19th, 2012

Once you open and unwrap your favorite products, think twice before heading straight to the garbage can. There is a multitude of ways to reuse product packages and become a “post-consumer” guru. “Post-consumer” refers the use of a product once it is no longer used for its originally intended purpose. The first step of the post-consumer cycle begins with waste. Think again about your printing, paper, and packaging products reuse them around the house and get creative!

You can start to make a difference even before you purchase. In your normal shopping routine, start to pay attention to labels that tell you what the product is made of. By purchasing products that recycle a large percentage of post-consumer waste, you are helping the environment by preventing the need to tap into the beautiful natural resources that our planet has to offer.

Once waste gets to the landfill, it is subjected to a complex sorting process. With both of these steps you are keeping landfills clear of useful material that is perfectly reusable. So have fun being creative with your everyday reusable product packaging, and don’t forget to keep an eye out for products that utilize post-consumer resources. Remember- what goes around comes around- so feel great about doing your part to encourage the success of the recycling market and process!