We are often asked by clients how they can make their packaging environmentally friendly.
There are no official guidelines as to what makes a product or package environmentally friendly but there are basic standards that should always be implemented where possible.
Made from FSC Approved Materials
FSC certification is critical to being environmentally friendly. Using paper and materials that originate from a sustainable source and are not illegally cut down from a rainforest in Brazil or Indonesia is far more important than claiming your packaging is recycled or recyclable.
Using an FSC certification (Wrapology is FSC certified) means that we (as the manufacturer) have to provide evidence of where the material came from.
Made using Recyclable Materials
Particularly with luxury packaging, this can be difficult to achieve since luxury packaging relies on using multiple materials including plastic, paper and metals.
If you want your product to be recyclable, you must use as few materials as possible. For example; a paper box should use only paper and not use OPP lamination, magnets or have a VAC tray.
Paper can be recycled a few times before it breaks down. Plastic has a much longer recycling lifespan but should it leak from the recycling chain it will not break down like paper (hence why our Seas are littered with plastic now).
Bio-degradable plastic will degrade over time should it leak from the recycling chain but it cannot be Recycled as effectively as non-degradable plastic.
ISO 14000 is a family of standards related to environmental management that exists to help organizations
(a) minimize how their operations(processes, etc.) negatively affect the environment (i.e., cause adverse changes to air, water, or land);
(b) comply with applicable laws, regulations, and other environmentally oriented requirements, and (c) continually improve in the above.
Our factory is ISO 14000 approved and follows the strict guidelines laid out to ensure we are compliant.
This sounds good but if the recycling process is poorly managed. I.e. uses harsh chemicals to bleach the paper white and dumps those chemicals into a local river or burns coal to heat the water that turns the paper to pulp; it's very bad for the environment.
Another concern is where the material being recycled came from in the first place; If you are recycling waste materials originating from unknown sources, this could be sustaining illegal and damaging practices. At Wrapology, we try to ensure that all our materials are manufactured and used in a sustainable manner.