Archive for July, 2011

Chair In The Box

Wednesday, July 27th, 2011

It’s lighter than a magazine, easy to set up, holds a person up to approximately 200 lbs, and is made out of corrugated box material. So what is it? It’s Chair In The Box. Yes, a simple box that is opened and easily folded to make a chair.

The chair is very functional. The corrugated boards are composed of recycled secondary fibers like used newspapers and old boxes. There are several environmental benefits with Chair In The Box. It encourages the use of recycled materials and helps in saving paper. The product also provides a good alternative option for metal products which are non-renewable resources.

After Centuries, Bananas Finally Get Packaging

Friday, July 22nd, 2011

The history of the banana goes back centuries but the fruit has never had its own packaging. Maybe it’s because a banana doesn’t need packaging? The banana skin itself is strong and biodegradable but has now, after all these years, been deemed insufficient.

Del Monte has come up with their individual plastic wrappers as packaging for bananas. Many people think it’s completely unnecessary because bananas don’t need packaging and adding the plastic wrapper is wasteful. Del Monte however, says the plastic banana package features “Controlled ripening technology” which extends the shelf life of the fruit. Further, this technology could actually reduce the carbon footprint by cutting back the frequency of deliveries. Plus, it’s recyclable.

It’s a very interesting argument. Tell us what you think. Is this banana wrapper necessary or completely preposterous?

Lego Responds to Packaging Pressures

Monday, July 18th, 2011

Lego, Mattel, and Disney have recently been facing pressure from Greenpeace to change their packaging. The environmental group accused all three companies of using packaging material sourced from trees that were cleared from the Indonesian rainforest. The materials were coming from Asia Pulp and Paper who Greenpeace calls the worst forest offender in Indonesia. Aside from demanding that the three toy companies quit buying their packaging materials from APP, Greenpeace also called on them to implement new sustainable packaging policies for all pulp and paper products.

In response, Lego has just announced that they’re aiming to reduce the amount of their packaging materials as well as only use pulp and paper products that are FSC certified. Because of their new policy, they will be prohibited from buying packaging materials from APP.

Mattel released a statement confirming that they put a hold on purchasing supplies from APP and have a sustainable packaging policy on the way. Greenpeace however has criticized Mattel’s response due to a lack of timelines and figures.

Disney has yet to respond to the allegations.

The World of Upcycling

Wednesday, July 13th, 2011

Upcycling is the process of converting waste materials or products that cannot be recycled into new materials or products of better quality or a higher environmental value. This is a fairly new term in our increasingly eco-conscious world. Upcycling embraces uniqueness and creativity because upcycled products are truly one of a kind.

One of the pioneers of upcycling is TerraCycle. They are taking wasteful materials such as drink pouches, chip bags, and tooth brushes and making them into a variety of neat consumer products. TerraCycle’s products are available through a number of retailers including Wal-Mart and Target as well as online.

The goal of TerraCycle is to help eliminate waste. They run their own collection programs at many major retailers, theatres, stadiums, and restaurants. In fact, you can sign up on their website to donate certain waste items to TerraCycle and they’ll pay the shipping to get it from you and donate money to a charity of your choice. Find out more about How TerraCycle Works.

These products are very fun. Take a look at some examples below and check out TerraCycle on Facebook and Twitter.

Packaging Waste Declining in Europe

Tuesday, July 5th, 2011

Despite a growing population, packaging waste is declining rapidly in Europe. An analysis of data from 1998 to 2008 shows that the decline in packaging waste is driven by high recycling levels and other forms of packaging recovery. In 2008, 17 million metric tons of packaging were sent for final disposal. This represents a reduction of 57% from 1998.

The objective for reducing packaging waste in Europe was set out by the European Organization for Packaging and the Environment. Their goal over the studied time period was a packaging waste reduction of 55% so you can imagine they were happy to find that the strategy worked and the goal was reached.

The report contradicts a strong perception that packaging has led to a mass of waste throughout Europe and confirms that packaging waste accounts for 3% of Europe’s total waste.

Packaging Waste Declining in Europe

Friday, July 1st, 2011

Despite a growing population, packaging waste is declining rapidly in Europe. An analysis of data from 1998 to 2008 shows that the decline in packaging waste is driven by high recycling levels and other forms of packaging recovery. In 2008, 17 million metric tons of packaging were sent for final disposal. This represents a reduction of 57% from 1998.

The objective for reducing packaging waste in Europe was set out by the European Organization for Packaging and the Environment. Their goal over the studied time period was a packaging waste reduction of 55% so you can imagine they were happy to find that the strategy worked and the goal was reached.

The report contradicts a strong perception that packaging has led to a mass of waste throughout Europe and confirms that packaging waste accounts for 3% of Europe’s total waste.