The Value of Sustainable Packaging Choices: Positive for the Planet & Your Business

By now you’re well aware that the trend toward more sustainable lifestyle choices is here to stay. From buying electric vehicles to installing solar panels on rooftops, consumers are demonstrating in a multitude of ways that they are willing to put their purchasing power where their mouths are and start the process of changing the world.

How to Make Sustainable Packaging Choices

For most people, making a gigantic behavior change like moving to a tiny house or starting a permaculture system on their property is out of the question. Smaller changes, however, like buying everyday items that are produced by brands with sustainable business practices and packaging options, are within the means of most consumers.

Not only do these small choices have a positive impact on the environment, but they also have the ability to create the momentum for bigger change and pressure brands into doing their part in the fight to save the earth.

If you’re a business who’s still on the fence about the value of making commitments to sustainable practices, consider this: a CGS survey of 1,000 U.S. consumers found that almost 70% of respondents considered sustainability as at least “somewhat important” and almost half (47%) said that would pay 25% more for sustainable products.

Discover some of the ways Inovar can help you become more sustainable below.

Sustainable Packaging Label Options

At Inovar Packaging Group, we understand the importance of providing our customers with sustainable label options. Labels are an integral part of the supply chain of almost any consumer product, so many brands are looking for label options that represent their commitment to sustainable business practices. We offer a variety of more sustainable label material choices.

Post-Consumer Waste Material

One of our most common types of sustainable label material is post-consumer waste material. This label material is made from items that have completed their life cycles as consumer goods and have been diverted from landfills to be repurposed into something new. Aluminum cans, bottles, and the paper in your office recycling bin are some examples of things that are commonly used in post-consumer waste products. We offer post-consumer waste labels made from 30% PCW and 100% PCW.

Post-consumer wastepaper options will give plenty of flexibility with color and design. There may be some color limitations due to the fact that PCW paper is unbleached and has some natural tint to it. But our team of experts will work closely with you to make sure your art has the high impact you need.

Certified Sustainable Packaging Material

Many of the label materials we use most frequently are certified sustainable, meaning that the material itself comes from responsibly managed forests that provide environmental, social and economic benefits. Our basic semi-gloss paper option and several of our linen and estate paper options are certified sustainable.

Tree-Free Label Material Choices

We also offer “tree-free” label options and are constantly testing new materials made from plants like hemp and grapeseed to find innovative solutions to environmental challenges. There is a drive in our industry to reduce material usage altogether, with a large focus on label liners, and Inovar is at the forefront of testing these new materials to make sure our customers get the quality they expect. We are working with our suppliers to test new materials wherein both the label material and liner are thinner and are therefore made from less material and create less waste.  

Communicating Sustainable Packaging Practices with Your Label

If you have adopted sustainable business practices like sourcing material responsibly and reducing waste at your production facility, it is essential that you communicate that to potential customers. While there are numerous channels through which you can broadcast information about yourself, your label is actually one of your most effective marketing tools.

Using informative graphics on your label is a powerful way to communicate quickly and effectively about your brand. Informative graphics are simply bits of information presented in an easy-to-understand pictorial or visual format. As the demand for informative graphics on labels increases, you can count on the quality of an Inovar-printed label to communicate to your customers exactly what you need it to.

There are many graphics that brands use regularly and are universally recognized, like the green and white “Certified Organic” or blue “Non-GMO Project Verified,” but your choices with informative graphics are truly limitless. Many of our partner brands use them with great creativity to share product and facility information that otherwise may take too much time to impart to a consumer.

QR codes are another great way to accomplish a connection with potential buyers, and there are extensive ways to use them to your advantage to communicate about your sustainability. They can link to social media or your website where you can describe in a more extensive way your sustainable strategies. Or, even better, how about linking a QR code to a virtual tour of your facility or taking a customer on a journey through your supply chain?

Other Packaging Options

According to a McKinsey article about the drive toward sustainable packaging, “large amounts of packaging produced today cannot be recycled in existing recycling systems. This is especially true for multi-material packaging, which today poses a significant and unresolved challenge in recycling.”

Many consumers are unaware that before recycling most consumer goods packaged in plastic, glass, aluminum, or other containers, the label needs to be removed to avoid causing issues in the recycling process. If you’ve ever tried to remove a label, you know what an onerous task it can be and how it may discourage recycling for many consumers. Inovar has the perfect solution for this issue: shrink sleeves.

With a perforation along the shrink sleeve that makes for easy removal by the customer, the guesswork is eliminated about recycling the primary packaging. If your company isn’t already using shrink sleeves as a way of showing their dedication to sustainability, now is the time.

At Inovar we are committed to providing innovative solutions to our customers, and more sustainable label and packaging options are just one way we do so. Contact us today to talk specifics about your label project and how we can help you achieve your sustainability goals.

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