eco friendly corrugated boxes Tag

23 Aug 2011 Mark Langan’s Corrugated Art – The Ultimate in “Upcycling”

Mark Langan SalutationUnless this is the first time you have visited our blog, you already know we are avid proponents of reusing and recycling packaging. That is especially true of our corrugated products that offer the most in recycled content, because no one has figured out how to improve on 100%. The one area of sustainability that we have yet to master is that of “upcycling,” which is recycling a product and making it even more valuable than it originally was. I sincerely appreciate and respect people who are able to take empty juice pouches and turn them into fashion handbags or use empty wine bottles to create beautiful table lamps out of what might otherwise end up in a landfill. However, Mark Langan, with a lot of talent and time, is able to take corrugated board and turn it into beautiful works of art.
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17 Aug 2011 Eco-Friendly, Custom-Printed Die Cut Mailers May Be the Right Green Packaging Solution for Your Web Customers

Custom printed stock corrugated mailersToday, there are few companies selling products wholesale or in brick-and-mortar retail outlets that are not also offering their products directly to consumers via the internet. This relatively new market provides tremendous sales opportunities as well as challenges because the packaging required for this type of customer seems to fall somewhere in between usual retail and wholesale requirements. “I want something more than just a shipping box!” That is a common request by packaging customers and design clients who understand their web customer is technically a direct retail customer who is NOT carrying his product (and packaging) home. The product is being shipped via UPS, FedEx or USPS, so the packaging needs to be more durable than what is typically found on the retail shelf level. Sellers of green products have the additional requirement of making the packaging they are shipping into their customers’ homes as minimal and green as possible. We refer to it as being “eco consistent” when our products, marketing and packaging all communicate the same green message and standards.
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10 Aug 2011 Sustainable Packaging – Niche Products and Broad-Based Solutions

Niche Products and Broad-Based Solutions for Green PackagingI have spent several decades in the packaging industry and almost five years specifically in the green packaging market. During that time, I have come to appreciate both innovations that may have limited appeal but solve a specific or unique problem, as well as products that may not be as newsworthy but provide a solution to a much wider group of customers. What Is a Broad-Based Solution? In my mind, it is a product that would have mass appeal and solve a common or very typical packaging problem. For example, when we and others began promoting 100% recycled content corrugated for shipping boxes, the concept did not win awards or grace the cover of packaging magazines, even though it could potentially benefit every single shipping box buyer and user.
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20 Jul 2011 Save Water – Use Globe Guard® 100% PCW Recycled Content Boxes

Globe Guard® 100% PCW Recycled Content Boxes Save WaterAs most of the country suffers through a record heat wave, droughts are becoming more common worldwide, including here in the USA. Those trends make it an excellent time to remind people about the environmental benefits of using shipping boxes made of recycled corrugated. Water Shortage Is for Real I admit we are a little spoiled in the Midwest, especially here in the Chicago area where we take beautiful Lake Michigan for granted as an ample source of drinking water and a summertime water park. In many other parts of the country, long before this current heat wave, water has been consistently in short supply, in some cases for several years. In other words, for some this is not a new problem and they have been dealing with water conservation efforts for some time. The problem is not just in the dry southwest or in agricultural areas; it is even impacting our largest American cities. A report last year identified cities literally running out of water, and the list included Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Atlanta, Orlando, Phoenix and several cities in Texas.
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07 Jun 2011 Mahamosa – Tea with a Giving Heart

Mahamosa Globe Guard® 100% PCW recycled content corrugated shipping boxI often say that one of the greatest benefits of operating a green business is all of the extraordinary people and companies we get to meet. Our new friends at Mahamosa are a perfect example. Social Responsibility and Environmental Responsibility For most green companies, it is not a choice of one or the other; the question is how best to accomplish both. We try to make the environmental part of that objective as easy as possible by providing our customers the most eco-friendly packaging available. The nice people at Mahamosa quickly agreed that our Globe Guard® 100% PCW recycled content corrugated shipping boxes were consistent with their goals and messaging.
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24 May 2011 Reducing Corrugated Use through Proper Design

Side load FOL boxMany people believe the only way to reduce corrugated usage is by buying and using fewer boxes. While that is certainly one approach, a better and more effective one is making sure you are packing and shipping the best style of container for your product and application. When RSC Boxes Are NOT the Best Design Recently, we have encountered several applications for large, relatively low profile products such as unassembled furniture and picture frames. In each case, people were shipping product in oversized, low profiled RSC style boxes with large overlapping layers of redundant corrugated board. The problem, of course, is that the four flaps on top and bottom of any RSC style box typically do little but add cost. You could almost excuse the extra cost if it delivered better protection to the product, but sadly, in most cases it does not. The two large major flaps coming together in the middle of the box essentially create a weak joint on the box, especially if they are not taped well. The large spans of unsupported corrugated also make the design very susceptible to crushing and corner damage.
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05 Apr 2011 Paper Based Packaging Is the Greenest Way to Lower Costs When Plastic Prices Are Soaring

Globe Guard non-plastic mailing optionsA quick look at today’s headlines or the nearest gas pump confirms oil prices are on a steep rise, which ultimately impacts natural gas and plastic resin prices as well as everything we buy or use that contains plastic. Experts tell us there is no end in sight, so as we see plastic packaging going through the roof with some products experiencing multiple price increases in the last six months, it’s a great time to remind our readers that almost any plastic packaging solution has a paper-based alternative.
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13 Jan 2011 The Globe Guard “Light Rate” Box is Better Than Free

[caption id="attachment_2285" align="alignright" width="297"]Globe Guard Light Rate Box Globe Guard Light Rate Box[/caption] Recently, we’ve had several opportunities to help customers disprove the old adage that “the best things in life are free.” The fact is that for many shippers a free item may NOT be a good deal, for example when it is a USPS flat rate shipping box. The USPS Flat Rate Deal The USPS flat rate program is a marvelous idea, and they do a beautiful job of promoting it. Is there anyone who doesn’t love the TV commercial with the clown doll and the frightened family that is eager to return it? However, what is truly scary is how much that free box can actually wind up costing depending on the weight of the item being shipped. Their program is fairly simple: “If it fits, it ships anywhere in the country for one low flat rate.” The rate for their smallest 8-1/2” long x 5-3/16” wide x 1-9/16″ high box (actual inside dimensions) has recently increased from $4.95 per box to $5.20 per box. That's still a heck of a deal for many customers considering they can ship unlimited weight via USPS priority mail, which is typically a three day service. And don’t forget, the box is free.
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27 Oct 2010 Die Cut versus RSC Style Corrugated Shipping Boxes

RSC on left, die cut design on rightIt is not at all uncommon for an application or product to be able to ship out in either a die cut mailer box or a Regular Slotted Container (RSC) style shipping container. Both are quite effective and can be as eco friendly as the corrugated board that is used to make them. In some cases, the choice comes down to customer preference, but there are definitely some distinct advantages to each design. The Advantages of an RSC style shipping box design: 1.    In most cases, unless an RSC is extremely small, it does not require tooling such as a cutting die. 2.    Usually an RSC is less expensive because it consumes less board. 3.    It is easier to erect compared to some complicated die cut designs.
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15 Oct 2009 Sustainable Packaging and Staples – Still Not Easy!

[caption id="attachment_926" align="alignnone" width="350" caption="Staples Packaging Leaves Much to Be Desired"]Staples Packaging Leaves Much to Be Desired[/caption] Earlier this year, January 13th to be exact, I posted an article complaining about some very eco unfriendly secondary packaging I had received from one of our favorite suppliers, Staples. Large retailers often appear to be leading the green charge so the interest level they create is usually high and this was no exception. The post was soon picked up by Green Biz and other eco focused blogs and I even contacted them on at least two occasions and offered my services at no cost so I could help them determine where Staples' in house fulfillment “eco system” is obviously broken. I was told they were “working on it,” so as a loyal customer concerned about their secondary packaging as well as the environment, I waited, and waited until this week when we received delivery of an order we placed for two boxes of ink cartridges.

Staples Green Update – More Green Packaging Problems

The photo above show the two boxes of Canon ink cartridges which shipped from two different Staples facilities. I appreciate the fact that the order was split-shipped to be filled quickly but I find I hard to believe that neither facility had both items. I am not sure what type of carbon footprint that creates but the worse news is that each facility used a different way of packaging the product and neither passed the green test as far as we are concerned. The term one step forward and two steps backwards comes to mind when we compare it to the packaging described in our January blog post.

Package #1 Shipping from Beloit, WI

At this Staples distribution center the packer opted to use a plastic mailer envelope. Even though I don’t like flexible mailers for crushable product, I am generally a big proponent of mailer envelopes, plastic and paper. I like them because they are light weight, can be made of recycled content and in most areas may be recycled for creating more packaging or other plastic products. However, the mailer that Beloit used did not indicate any recycled content, and did not even offer a recycle code for handling the waste after use. This is a real shame considering some of the new plastic mailers that are available. We offer several that would be better eco options than what was used on this shipment.

Package #2 Shipping from Carol Stream, IL

At this facility they used a 13” long X 10” wide X 5” box (650 cubic inches) to ship a 4” X 2.25” X 2.75” product, or about 25 cubic inches, which is obviously much more box than was necessary.
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