Business Owners: Here’s How We Can Fight the COVID–Fueled Plastic Pandemic
Terrifying as they may be, the gigantic floating islands of plastic garbage in Earth’s oceans are now common knowledge. This is a fact, but not a problem that can be resolved quickly or easily. After all, 2020 delivered a few more pressing dilemmas, like COVID–19.
One unforeseen consequence of this pandemic is analarming increase in the use of single use plasticsand other waste products, such as rubber gloves and disposable face masks. 2020 is on track to see a huge increase in waste production worldwide.
But what is there to do about it? A lot. There is a lot we can do about it as business owners and retailers.
Think about this. In the laudable attempt to stay home, consumers are ordering everyday products, groceries, meals, and clothing for home delivery more than ever before. All of those items have to be delivered in bags and containers, many of which are plastic. Manufacturers have answered this demand with a flood of single-use plastic products, decreasing the cost of new plastic while the cost of recycled plastic continues to rise. Now it is less profitable to recycle plastic and even more expensive to buy recycled plastic.
Cities that are buckling under budget cuts caused by the pandemic are cutting local recycling programs. All of these factors snowball into a great increase in plastic waste production while plastic recycling initiatives stutter, fail, and in many cases, drop off completely.
The result? Those floating islands of plastic waste have grown by as much as 30% this year alone, according to the Journal of Environmental Science & Technology. Those are a lot of dark and ominous facts, we know.
But the good news is this: There are easy ways for regular, everyday consumers to reduce plastic waste consumption. It’s up to business owners like us to show them how.
The Solution: Eco Packaging Design
By packaging and shipping products in recycled, recyclable, and biodegradable materials, we give our customers the satisfaction of reducing plastic waste. We can educate them on the benefits of choosing sustainable retailers who use eco-friendly packaging materials.
For example, a paper bag that finds its way into the ocean will decompose in a matter of weeks, as opposed to 450 years for a plastic bag. 450 years! Knowing this fact, wouldn’t you choose a retailer that uses biodegradable packaging? Most of our customers wouldtoo, given the facts and an opportunity to choose.
We can give them that opportunity by packaging and shipping our products in sustainable packaging materials, such as:
- Vela paper protection for products in place of polybags
- Polybags are used to protect individual products from shipping and handling damage, but who said they had to be made from plastic?
- Sustainable tape and adhesive solutions -even custom printed!
- A tapecan ruin the sustainability of a biodegradable box. Choose biodegradable or recycled adhesives.
- Recycled and recyclable shippers and mailersa.
- Paper–based and easy to use, and reuse, and reuse!
- Biodegradable paper retail bags
- Such as carrier bags, cosmetics bags, and beyond.
- Eco-friendly food and SOS bags
- Sell food, not plastic.
- Recycled and recyclable packaging materials.
- Tissue paper is an excellent alternative to bubble wrap and packing peanuts.
All of these paper-based products are recycled and recyclable. What’s more, the paper is biodegradable, so even if it ends up in a landfill, it will decompose in a few weeks or months. Every retailer that implements eco-friendly packaging materials provides the opportunity for customers to make better choices for our planet. That’s a win, win, win!