When David Attenborough issued a call to action to combat plastic waste in the second series of Planet Earth II, searches for “plastic recycling” saw a dramatic uplift of 55%. His call to action went far beyond internet searches, leading to more environmental documentaries and with the passage of time, with government initiatives, corporate pledges, greener business initiatives, we are now witnessing an increased demand for eco-friendly packaging.
Eco-friendly packaging is no longer a nice-to-have add-on feature in your company’s product catalog anymore. It has become a must-have. There is an increasing trend of consumer scrutiny when it comes to eco-friendly practices of companies. Implementing greener practices has now become the cornerstone for most businesses. Most brands seek out eco-friendly packaging to align with their sustainable business practices.
If you’re a small to medium sized ecommerce company that wants to be more eco-friendly, one of the biggest areas you can look into is your packaging. Over the last few years, we saw a drastic increase in online shopping. A recent study by Oceana revealed that Amazon alone generated 465 million pounds of plastic packaging waste in 2019, and the number of air pillows alone could circle the globe 500 times.
These studies and statistics prove that it is becoming increasingly urgent and important for businesses to adopt more eco-friendly practices. The rising consumer demand for sustainable practices double folds the need for eCommerce merchants to switch to eco-friendly packaging for their products.
To help you out with your eco-friendly packaging needs, we have put together a very handy list with details of eco-friendly packaging materials. Arka provides multiple sustainable packaging options and you can go over the details below to see what kind of eco-friendly packaging product best suits your eCommerce company's needs.
As an ecommerce merchant, one of the most impactful steps you can take to go green is to revamp your packaging and shipping practices by incorporating eco-friendly packaging as a part of your business strategy. McDonald's announced its packaging will be 100% renewable and recycled by 2025. Additionally, millennials are pushing brands to be more socially and environmentally responsible.
It has now become abundantly clear that the term ‘eco-friendly packaging’ is more than a mere buzzword.
A recent study found that:
- 37% of U.S. consumers prioritize sustainability when making buying decisions.
- 30% of consumers are willing to pay a premium for products that deliver on sustainability claims
Packaging engineering is developing at a remarkable speed. As a result of this development, more eco-friendly packaging options can now be seen in the market. Before we go too deep into the world of eco-friendly packaging, let's understand what it actually means?
What is Eco-Friendly Packaging?
In very simple words, eco-friendly packaging is the kind of packaging that over time, reduces its environmental footprint.
This can happen in a number of ways:
- Production process: Solar-powered plants at production site, reducing carbon footprint
- Shipping process: Ships in its own container (SIOC) (allows for less waste and a better unboxing experience)
- Ingredients: Raw or recycled materials, sourced responsibly
- Reusability: Creating a circular economy around the packaging, extending its life cycle and usability.
Arka has recently added a wide variety of eco-friendly packaging products to the product catalog. Let's dive into the world of eco-packaging, and see its benefits for your brand.
a. FSC Certified Mailer Box + Inserts
Arka is a FSC certified eco-friendly packaging company. This means that Arka ensures that all its packaging products come from responsibly managed forests that provide environmental, social and economic benefits. Our products are made with a combination of FSC virgin fiber, and/or recycled materials with controlled virgin fiber.
An FSC certified mailer box is usually the preferred packaging choice for Direct to Consumer eCommerce businesses as well as subscription box businesses. This mailer style box adds the wow factor to your unboxing experience.
Arka’s Roll End Lock Front with Dust Flaps and Cherry Locks (RELF) 32 ECT mailer can be used in almost every facet and genre of consumer goods. From beauty, cosmetics, cannabis CBD, food and beverage, electronics, apparel, books, office supplies, to even home goods.
There are no die cutters, print plates or other tooling used for orders below 2500 boxes utilizing our digital presses to optimize our eco-friendly packaging practices.
We can accommodate larger orders by switching to our flexographic presses so please ask.
You can customize your color, text of choice and add your logo as well. All our products are made in the USA. Our standard production time is two to three weeks after proof approval. For rush production, it's one to two weeks.
You can add an extra touch of elegance to your customer’s unboxing experience by using Arka’s custom inserts. Adding inserts to your custom product boxes may seem insignificant at first but if you understand the full potential of what they do, it really is the cherry on top of your branding! By adding inserts you can build a personal connection with your target market.
Now what exactly is an insert? In the simplest definition, insert is an add-on that you place in your mailer box, that secures the product and also creates a drastically more impactful unboxing experience.
For the most part, the primary function of insert is to act like a personal bodyguard for your product. It protects and supports your products from the production stage, all the way to the unboxing stage.
Lastly, you can also add informational content to your inserts for promotion purposes. It offers a sense of authenticity and provides your customers with a product that is sent with utmost care, thus building brand loyalty in the longer run.
We’ll use your product sizes and quantities to create the dielines for final approval of the inserts.
b. Honeycomb Paper Mailer
Arka’s Honeycomb Paper Mailer is a great eco-friendly packaging option for your fragile products as honeycomb paper interior provides a layer of cushioning.
These are made from recycled paper and FSC-certified honeycomb which is compostable and curbside recyclable. The recycled paperboard provides a rigid structure that is both durable and waterproof.
It is a perfect alternative to plastic packaging, making your eco-conscious customers happy while also protecting the environment.
c. Compostable Vacuum Pouch
Arka’s compostable vacuum pouches are made using our renewable Plantcell technology. The pouches have a high barrier to both oxygen and moisture and are fully biodegradable and compostable.
The best thing about them is that they break down into healthy compost leaving no microplastics and conform to all major compost certifications including OK Compost Home and AS5810.
d. 100% recycled mailer
Arka's 100% recycled mailers are made using a combination of post-consumer (70%) & post-industrial recycled (30%) LDPE and as the name suggests, they're also fully recyclable themselves.
100% recyclable packaging, drastically reduces carbon dioxide emission, consumption of water and oil and also prevents deforestation.
e. Compostable Bubble Mailer
Arka’s compostable bubble mailers are the perfect eco-friendly packaging solution if you are looking to ditch non-recyclable plastic and are especially useful if you have a product that needs to stay water-proofed.
They are made from renewable bioplastic film. The mailers break down into healthy compost leaving no micro plastics and conform to all most major compost certifications including OK Compost Home and AS 5810. They are both durable and waterproof and are ideal for items requiring protection during transit, or as a sustainable alternative to void fill.
These top 5 eco-friendly packaging solutions will enable you to make your business go green and protect the environment at the same time. These options are also financially more feasible for your business.
Sustainability is now a priority in the UK, EU, and the USA. In the end, sustainable packaging does not have to be difficult or cost more. It simply requires a different approach and new strategies for reducing, reusing, and recycling materials.
Developing eco-friendly product packaging is an important responsibility for the eCommerce industry now. It is the need of the hour and if you are seeking eco-friendly packaging alternatives, look no further! Arka has got you covered!