Sustainable Perspective Tag

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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15 Jun 2011 Inside Sustainable Packaging Reaches Three Year Anniversary

Inside Sustainable Packaging blog 3 year anniversaryIt’s difficult to believe that we’ve been doing this for three years, but this week marks the third anniversary of the launch of our popular blog. In 2008, our then-marketing director Brad Shorr urged us to blog and share what we know and what we do, with the world. I reluctantly agreed, even though operating a business that openly ran contrary to my nature as well as my experience in the packaging industry, where you learn to never, ever risk educating the competition. Nearly 300 blog posts later, I am thrilled by the results of our outreach and even more grateful for the people and companies it has brought into our lives. If we have educated a competitor or two along the way, it was a small price to pay for the information we’ve been able to share with hundreds, if not thousands, of people, as well as the relationships we have made. One of the things we most appreciate is the feedback we receive from our ISP readers, which is quite often sent to us offline. To commemorate this three year milestone we’ve shared a few of the most frequently asked questions.
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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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05 Aug 2010 Canon Printer Packaging – Not Eco Consistent or Up to Date

One of the things I find most interesting about sustainable packaging as well as quite frustrating at times, is that it is constantly changing. We know firsthand that what was considered green just a short two years ago is no longer acceptable as the products, processes and popular thought have all changed. The packaging for a new Canon desk top printer we recently purchased is a perfect example of this. What Canon Used in Terms of Packaging To get the printer from Thailand to us, Canon used a virtual smorgasbord of packaging and unfortunately most of it is not very green by today’s standards. The products they used are shown in the photo below and included: Cannon's Printer Packaging

• Almost 2,700 square inches of heavy-grade corrugated (4.9 lbs. worth) • 4 molded poly styrene corner protectors • 4 paper board tubes • Various corrugated pads and inserts • A few flexible foam surface protectors • A wide variety of high density polyethylene sheets and bags

To their credit, everything that was not a paper based product included a recycle code, even the polystyrene corner protectors. They were clearly molded to show their PS, #6 recycle code. Good luck with that since there are few facilities able or willing to take in polystyrene in any form.
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14 Apr 2009 A Book Review of “Packaging Sustainability”, by Wendy Jedlicka

packaging-sustainability-by-wendy-jedlickaIn the interest of full disclosure I have to tell you I consider Wendy a personal friend and ally in our efforts to help make the world greener through packaging. Even though the book includes a photograph of my incredibly cute granddaughter (intro, page VI) and a reprint of something I recently wrote (page 14), I have absolutely no problem being straightforward with my comments on her book. In fact I would dare to say our relationship and friendship would suffer if I was less than honest in my appraisal of Wendy’s work. “Sustainability isn’t hard: it’s just not simple” That is the opening thought Wendy shares with us in her introduction, and I will admit that my initial concern was that any book about sustainability authored by a designer, especially an accomplished, talented designer like Wendy, would be technical and therefore somewhat boring for the average, non-designer reader like yours truly. I am very pleased to say Wendy wrote a book that can and should be read by anyone and everyone interested in sustainability from a buyer or seller, user or provider perspective. In other words, almost anyone with even a passing interest in green or in packaging can and will enjoy and learn something from reading Packaging Sustainability. No magic solutions or secret ingredients provided Wendy offers no easy answers because there rarely are any. For the person interested in a quick solution or an easy way out, there is none to be had in this book or any other book that is truthful and well informed. On the plus side, this book does not read like a designer’s text book and is filled with excellent case studies, examples and of course Wendy’s well informed insight and very obvious experience. If you too have strong feelings about sustainability, you may not always fully agree with everything Wendy has written but you undoubtedly will conclude it is well thought out and well presented.
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25 Sep 2008 Am I Re-Trainable for Sustainable?, Revisited

Green

Image via Wikipedia

This month represents an anniversary of sorts for me because it was one year ago when I submitted my first, above titled article to Rider Thompson of Sustainable Is Good and he chose to publish it. The article was a tongue in cheek recap of my career in packaging and how it relates to sustainability. Much to my surprise, it was picked up and run by numerous other internet outlets including Reuters and GreenBiz. It seemed like a good time to share with you some observations and what we have learned about sustainability during the last year.
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23 Sep 2008 Eco Ed – Humor in Sustainable Packaging

Our marketing director, Brad Shorr, and I are very different in many ways but one thing we have in common is a good appreciation of humor. With all the confusion, contradictions and misinformation in sustainable packaging, it is not always easy to find the humor in it but we work at it. With the help of a very talented illustrator, Mark Hill, Brad and I created “Eco Ed”, a cartoon series about the guy we can all relate to, who wants to do the right thing for the environment but is often not sure what the right thing is. We showed the concept to Joe Angel of Summit Publishing and he immediately decided he wanted to make it a regular feature in their Packaging World magazine, beginning last April.
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