Packaging is an essential aspect of the supply chain. On a basic level, packaging is important because it protects products as they are transported and ensures that they are intact when they reach consumers. However, on a higher level, packaging is essential as supply chain companies strive to become more sustainable. Because of evolving consumer habits, increased awareness of environmental impacts, and pressure from retailers, manufacturers are making changes to decrease their footprint. One of the leading modifications some are making to become more eco-conscious is switching to reusable packaging.
Reusable packaging involves packaging that is designed to be durable and easy to clean and repair so that it can be used multiple times. For logistics companies, reusable packaging may consist of pallets, bins, bulk containers, reusable plastic containers, and other containers that safely move products through the supply chain. However, on a smaller scale, reusable packaging can also consist of reusable bottles or boxes.
Companies that make the switch to reusable packaging may see some key benefits:
- Economic Boost – Businesses that invest in reusable packaging may see savings due to a reduced need to purchase packaging and reduced disposal costs.
- Increased Sustainability – The ability to reuse and recycle packaging decreases the need for disposal and lowers the amount of packaging in landfills.
- Improved Satisfaction – Because of its durability, reusable packaging typically gets a product to its destination intact, lowering the number of damaged goods delivered to consumers.
Reusable Packaging Success Stories
Giant Foods recently announced that it plans to bring Loop, a reusable packaging program, to stores in the Washington, D.C., area this fall. The program will allow customers to purchase products in reusable containers that they can then return empty to a Loop return location. Once cleaned and restored, the packages are then refilled and returned to the grocery store shelves.
Another supermarket chain, Wegmans, uses reusable plastic containers to transport seafood from their suppliers to their grocery stores. Using reusable plastic containers has allowed them to eliminate single-use Styrofoam from their seafood supply chain. The company also uses reusable plastic totes to transport their produce and meat products.
Additionally, Dove Body Wash is bringing their customers reusable packaging with their new reusable body wash packaging system. The product’s starter kit includes a reusable pump bottle and a recyclable refill bottle containing body wash concentrate. Once purchased, customers can keep the reusable body wash bottle and refill it repeatedly, reducing waste and lowering costs.
Companies looking to invest in reusable packaging may also consider partnering with iGPS to manage all their pallet needs. iGPS plastic shipping pallets are 100% recyclable and complete an average of 100 trips across the supply chain per lifespan – compared to a standard multi-use wooden pallet, which can often wind up in a landfill after only about 25 trips. They are also resistant to contamination and corrosion, which gives them a long service life.
As sustainability continues to be top of mind for many, reusable packaging is growing as a solution to become more environmentally friendly. Companies looking to remain competitive in the evolving marketplace should consider investing in reusable packaging.
Companies committed to using reusable packaging utilize iGPS plastic pallets for all their shipping needs. Our lightweight, recyclable plastic pallets help make greener supply chains and reduce the Total Cost of Business. For more information, contact us at 1-866-557-0047, email a specialist at [email protected], or visit our contact page.