By Christopher Morgan, Global Sales Director
Convenience has long stood for a fast-paced, throw-away culture – at least in the last century. But not anymore: convenience now also means ease of use?but without?waste.
In the continually changing E-commerce world, businesses have many opportunities to provide an outstanding shopping experience, and the most enterprising retailers quickly take advantage of them.
Consumers are demanding?environmental responsibility from the companies they buy from. Demand for more sustainable shipping drives new efforts to minimise waste, promote green materials, and implement convenient recovery systems. Leading retailers are answering these expectations by providing hassle-free and recyclable materials, capitalising on opportunities to delight the customer with aesthetically pleasing, accessible packaging features.
Consumers want a better world
As consumers demand more products, there is in parallel an expectation that organisations of all kinds must radically reduce their impact on the natural world and create a positive impact on people and the planet.
All too often, discussions focus on the replacement of one material by another while not addressing the circularity of the system.?
Seven companies dominate the E-commerce space: Alibaba, Amazon, JD.com, eBay, Shopify, Rakuten, and Walmart. These companies – and other retailers with online marketplaces – have the responsibility, influence, and opportunity to make everyday products safer and more sustainable.
By focusing on?environmentally-friendly packaging, production and delivery, retailers can positively impact sustainability processes.
As sustainability becomes increasingly embedded into strategy, the key to business reputation and central to risk?and continuity, investors are?looking ever closer at how?companies manage their sustainability risks and capitalise on opportunities.
The traditional economic model is one where manufacturing organisations extract natural resources, process and combine them to create products which can be sold. A customer will then buy, re-sell, consume, and eventually dispose of the product when no longer needed. This is known as the 'take, make, dispose' model.
The circular economy model proposes an alternative where we can design out waste and pollution, keep products and materials in use, and regenerate natural systems.
New thinking on how companies can deliver on critical objectives while producing enhanced environmental and socioeconomic benefits is necessary for any company wishing to become genuinely sustainable.
This means a potential drastic shift from glitzy packaging on the shelf to packaging that serves a clear purpose. It protects your packaging, provides vital or regulatory information, and eliminates unnecessary graphics or extra materials to achieve its function. Decisions we make during the packaging design stage can have a domino effect on cost, carbon and?other environmental efficiencies for brands and retailers.
The problem contains the solution
An eco-evolution is happening on our doorsteps. But how do we join the dots between seemingly disparate customer demands, sustainability, and value?
Our breakthrough solution endeavours to help brands and converters worldwide meet their environmental goals while providing customers with more circular curbside recyclable packaging options.
Rippatape® Halo is targeted at the E-commerce market and aims to help packaging manufacturers and brand owners alike as they seek to exceed consumers' environmental and product experience expectations. As the first paper tape of its kind in the Filtrona Tapes ECO Range, it is externally certified as recyclable with paper achieving an A+ level via the Italian National Recyclability Standard: UNI 11743 and MC 501: 2017 criteria.
With a tearing performance comparable to our market-leading Rippatape® 60, Rippatape® Halo does not compromise on the easy opening credentials of its plastic alternative. This is truly impressive from a product based on a single-ply, specialised coated paper with no plastic films or laminates.
Thanks to our new and unique tear tape technology, Rippatape® Halo is recyclable along with paper and board packs, is fully reclaimable, eliminates the plastic film used in standard tear tapes, and focuses on fibre recovery.
Whether your brand is premium or value-led, we can create return-ready, memorable and true-to-brand packaging solutions that drive sales and improve recall.
Return of the pack
Never before have we wanted, owned, and wasted so much cardboard.
The good news is that corrugated board is recyclable and renewable, so does make a good choice for single-use packaging. The bad news is that not everyone will recycle, so there will certainly be some increase in the amount of material heading for the landfill.
E-commerce retailers that understand consumers' values and take responsibility for their products and operations' environmental and health impacts will benefit in the long term. By turning their attention to how sustainable a product is and the climate footprint from manufacturing and transport, companies can reduce their environmental impact while generating financial value.
One in five buy with the intent to return, so reusable options, which aim to transform packaging from single-use to multi-use assets, are being implemented as sustainable alternatives.
And that was the catalyst for our latest significant market intervention.
EASILINER enables the preservation of adhesive qualities in packaging formats where a glue line is used in production. Paired with the SF-AS DH1 applicator and used in tandem with the widely deployed Rippatape® collection, it represents a complete opening and closing solution for sheet plant/folder-gluer converters.
Our brand-new tape applicator system, developed by Filtrona Tapes' in-house team of experts, facilitates efficient tape application in the sheet-fed/folder-gluer manufacturing process, integrates a turnkey solution and simplifies supply chains within reach.
From quickly sealing with the pre-applied adhesive strip, speeding up warehouse fulfilment times, and opening packaging without frustration or destroying the packs integrity with a Rippatape® tear strip returns are then made simple with a second pre-applied adhesive strip of EASILINER. Packaging done right enriches the buying experience, lowers return rates, makes your customer feel like they and their product are cared for, and helps your brand stand out from the competition.
With living costs skyrocketing and consumers feeling the pinch, brands and converters must look beyond pricing to unlock creative opportunities such as this.
Packaging that doesn't cost the earth
While cutting how much packaging costs businesses will be critical for many, it shouldn't come at the expense of improving sustainability.
The climate crisis continues to escalate, meaning sustainable packaging must be at the heart of packaging strategies.
According to a recent study, packaging accounts for up to 2/3 of e-commerce emissions, including production, supply, use and end of life. It is critical to reduce the use of delivery packaging and move towards reusable or made-from-recycled material packaging.
Thanks to Rippatape® Halo, the sum of our packaging, including the tear tape, is now fibre-based and contains no synthetic fibres. It can be recycled directly in a mono-material paper recycling process.?It will add significant levels of recycled content without compromising the strength or functionality of the product.
In many cases, practicality still rules our choice of online retailer, but the demand is there, and the first E-commerce sites to offer greater sustainability - and little or no compromise on quality, convenience and price - have the advantage. The real winners will be those who use packaging creatively to enhance consumer experiences.
The personalisation of marketing messages and ease of E-commerce has led to a consumption boom. We see it, and we want it, and click, we buy it. It's a marketer's dream, but - in a world of finite natural resources – it could compound our ongoing environmental nightmare.