Packaging 101: The Complete Guide

Britt Martin, Arka's Partnerships lead, blends e-commerce expertise with sustainability advocacy, nurturing startups as a Founder in Residence at NYU.

Key Benefits of Carbon Neutral Packaging

Firstly, using carbon-neutral packaging means that you can contribute to environmental conservation. This is done by offsetting emissions and using packaging that contains sustainably-sourced and eco-friendly materials. You can reduce your carbon footprint in the process and cut back on activities that generate high emissions levels.

Secondly, using carbon neutral packaging can boost the reputation of your brand. Many consumers are more conscious of climate change and sustainability these days, so they like to see their favorite brands taking eco-friendly steps and contributing to helping the environment. Using carbon neutral packaging for your products can help boost your brand’s sustainable reputation and leave an impression on your consumers.

Using carbon neutral packaging can save you money and be much more cost-effective. This is because carbon neutral packaging is smart packaging. It is designed to store more products and fit into more spaces, which cuts down on storage, shipping and transportation costs.

In addition to this, carbon neutral packaging is compliant with regulations. It is normally certified with PAS 2060, which is internationally recognized for carbon neutrality by the BSI.

carbon neutral packaging

Credits: Cloud The Label, Instagram

Types of Carbon Neutral Packaging

Here are the different types of carbon neutral packaging.


Glass can be reused and recycled without using any of its properties. Even though it is easily breakable, it’s a much better alternative to using plastic, and by reusing it, you can stop it from going to landfill.

glass packagingCredits: PMV Chamara


Aluminium works well as a carbon neutral packaging material because it provides an effective barrier. With aluminum, less is more, so you don’t need to use as much or waste too much, lowering carbon emissions.

aluminium packaging

Paper and cardboard

Paper and cardboard are carbon-neutral materials because they can be reused and recycled, reducing the likelihood of going to landfill. Also, using recycled paper and cardboard made from sustainable materials such as bamboo is better because it prevents more trees from being cut down.

cardboard packaging material

Credits: Kelli McClintock


Plastic is one of the worst pollutants on the planet. However, if you use polypropylene, this type of plastic has a lower carbon emissions and reduces your carbon footprint.

plastic packaging material

Credits: Agenlaku Indonesia

How to Implement a Carbon-Neutral Packaging Process?

To implement a carbon-neutral packaging process for your business, it’s important to follow these necessary steps.

Understand the impact of deploying carbon-neutral packaging

When implementing sustainable strategies, it’s important to be mindful of the impact of deploying carbon-neutral packaging.

To do this, it’s important to take responsibility for your steps. You must have plans to offset carbon emissions as part of the process. For example, is it possible to consider using electric vehicles when deploying carbon neutral packaging via transportation?

carbon neutral packagings

Credits: Mildlee

Set your goals and strategy

To be successfully sustainable, it’s important to set your goals and establish a strategy to stay focused and hold yourself and your team accountable. It’s also a great way to assess and evaluate your emissions and to see what’s working and what could be improved within your business practices.

Make sustainability part of your brand’s values

These days, many companies have incorporated sustainability policies and values as part of their brands, so make sure you do the same. Within your policies and values, you need to make clear:

• Your stance on sustainability.

Your goals and targets to reach carbon neutrality.

Your strategies and processes that are in place to help you reach net zero.

    Research the machinery

    Machinery and other aspects of production generate high carbon emissions, so this is something that needs to be evaluated. Opt for efficient and energy-saving machinery and examine whether there are better ways to create your products.

    Consider using plastic as well

    We know plastics are bad for the planet. You can use bioplastics or polypropylene as part of your business because these plastics have lower carbon emissions, reducing your carbon footprint.

    Cooperate with net-zero couriers

    If your business delivers products and services to your customers’ doors, you probably use courier services, so consider using net-zero couriers. Net-zero couriers use electric vehicles to deliver goods and services, which is much more friendly to the environment and doesn’t pollute the air, and it can be a cost-effective solution.

    Carbon Neutral Package

    Credits: MealPro

    Educate your customers on how to recycle or repurpose your packaging

    When it comes to being more sustainable, knowledge is power, so educate your customers on how to recycle or repurpose your packaging.

    Recycling and repurposing items can be complex for many people, so be sure to add simple steps to help your customers use your packaging in an eco-friendly way.

    Measure the impact

    To hold yourself accountable, you need to measure the impact of your sustainability efforts. You can calculate your business’s carbon footprint by conducting an energy audit or using a climate/carbon calculation to check carbon emissions and energy consumption and to review best practices and ways to improve.

    Final Thoughts

    There are many ways to be more sustainable and reduce your carbon footprint, and one of the ways to do this is to use eco-friendly and carbon neutral packaging.

    With Arka, you can design eco-friendly packaging, boost brand awareness and attract consumers. Our eco-friendly custom mailer boxes and shipping boxes help brands increase awareness and boost their image while attracting new customers.

    FAQs about Carbon Neutral Packaging

    Here are a couple of frequently asked questions about carbon neutral packaging.

    Are there any certifications for carbon-neutral packaging?

    Yes. Thanks to organizations such as the Carbon Trust and the BSI, you can find carbon-neutral certifications and verification for packaging. The BSI provides PAS 2060 to products and packaging. This is the internationally applicable specification for carbon neutrality status.

    Can small businesses adopt carbon-neutral packaging?

    Absolutely! Small businesses can adopt carbon-neutral packaging by adopting carbon-neutral practices that reduce the carbon emissions generated by your business that your business can’t avoid. You can do this by:

    • Carbon offsetting emissions by planting trees and investing in renewable energy and sustainable environmental projects.

    • Cutting down on waste.

    • Avoiding non-recyclable, non-biodegradable, and non-compostable materials.

    • Using energy-saving and efficient manufacturing and supply chain practices.

    • Using electric vehicles.

    • Measuring your carbon footprint and setting your goals to help you reduce this, plus identifying the sources of the biggest carbon emissions in the business (e.g., transport.)

    • Using recyclable, biodegradable, and compostable packaging.

    In addition to this, carbon-neutral packaging can be much more cost-effective in the long run because unsustainable practices are costly and wasteful.

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