As the single use e-commerce packaging waste pile rapidly stacked up, the founders of this company sought it as not just an urgent issue but an opportunity to re-imagine packaging.
The Better Packaging Co. introduced a range of sustainable, compostable, biodegradable, recyclable, reusable and customizable packaging. This Carbon Positive company operates within a circular economy model, ensuring that care is taken at every stage (from raw material sourcing to end-of-life disposal) in the product life-cycle to minimize the impact.
Wait, Is E-commerce Packaging really that big of an issue?
While us homo-sapiens are trying to move forward and incorporate more and more changes, innovations, digitization and spur the growth of concrete jungle around us, the world we live in has been going backwards. Let’s face it, the end truth of realization of many human ambitions are the sacrifices demanded from nature, which is far too heavy for it to bear, and what could put that in our face more than 2020, the year of - well, you might probably have the answer to that already. But it’s not all pitch black of course, with the shortcomings of industrialization came the apprehension of the urgency and need to restore earth.
Now more and more brands are getting aware of the raw materials used in their products and trying to optimize the use of the same. The attempt to reduce their carbon footprint and noticeable rise in nature conscious products has been a result of not just brands becoming more aware but the collective conscious consumerism pushing brands towards sustainability.
It’s a given truth that with Covid-19, Quarantine and home based working/schooling has put more time and void into our hands than we know what to do with - that’s the cause, and the effect? The list is long, but (sometimes obsessive) online shopping is where I’m trying to get at. Many of us reach for our phones and scroll through oh so many products available out there that we might not necessarily need but want, and even when we as customers choose sustainable, environmental friendly products, most of these come in far from sustainable packaging hence simply adding to the single use waste pile.
We did half the work when we realized the hazards of packaging we have been utilizing up to now, and the other half?
A Wise Man Once Said “In the middle of Difficulty lies Opportunity”
Many eco-conscious companies are seed stage startups not having the luxury, resources and funds to invest in sustainable packaging. Noticing both, the fast growing waste (majorly plastic and cardboard) production by the e-commerce sector and inability of many companies to switch to a better alternative due to the lack of it, Rebecca Percasky and Kate Bezar saw this as a necessity and opportunity to start the sustainable packaging company - The Better Packaging Co. 2 years ago, in 2018.
Amazon, our well known online shopping brand and savior from stress, alone produced over 10,000 tonnes of packaging waste in the year 2018/19. That’s just one (big) company but taking in account the overall single use waste production from the whole sector - about one third of an average dump-yard consists of packaging materials.
All these statistics were horrifying to Rebecca, although it could only go uphill from there as she then worked on finding a solution to tackle all that plastic and cardboard along with Kate and so came around The Better Packaging Co.
The Greener Plastic(y) Pack?
As the company’s name suggests quite literally, it’s the better packaging alternative to single use e-commerce ones, far better. Made from corn and non toxic, compostable resin, most of the brands packaging solutions from their ComPOST line are home compostable and biodegradable (they’re even worm friendly!). These packages pass the stringent testing for Compostability - The Australasian Standard, AS5810, one of the toughest to meet - rather graciously. Their range is thus naturally Industrially / Commercially Compostable as well. Despite all the environmental considerations, the product does not compromise on the practicality of its use and works just like plastic packaging (if not better than).
Furthermore their new and zero waste range called ØPACK which is an alternative to plastic courier satchels, is made out of 80% waste material which is extracted from Limestone wastes from quarries and rest 20% from recycled, non toxic resin. The production process of this range promises Zero pollution, waste, water,tree, acids and bleaches. A carbon neutral production using solar energy. Oh that reminds me, the ØPACKs naturally degrade and return to earth (where they initially came from) when they receive enough sun and time, however they can also be recycled.
Innovative and Planet Conscious to the bone
The Better Packaging Co. has more boons to them as a brand then having a range of ComPOSTable and ØPACK packaging. The company has sustainability in its DNA and strives to give back more to the planet then it takes. They have recently become a Climate/Carbon Positive brand, this means that they go a step further from being Carbon neutral/Zero (which by definition is measuring and offsetting 100% of the carbon footprint made from the industry or company operations) and offset more carbon than they produced, which in their case is 120% offsetting of the carbon emissions.
Currently trialling a re-usable courier sachet that they call SWOP (The Sustainable Way of Packaging), The Better Packaging Co. aims at creating a full life-cycle approach for each packet that in turn enables them to create a system that has an even lower carbon footprint that any other product including their own.
Let’s break this down, SWOP is a sturdy (and quirky) packaging that can be used again and again and again with the help of a system which goes something like this - The merchant purchases SWOP packages in bulk quantities and encourages its customers to choose this packaging option, then the customer would be asked to return the SWOP pack back to The Better Packaging Co. base, where this pack will be refurbished and redistributed. Of course there is a little inconvenience the customer would have to bear, however they will receive some small incentives like gift cards, discount coupons etc. but more than anything else, we as consumers will be able to reduce our own individual Carbon footprint with just a little extra effort, sounds like a good deal to me.
More than just an alternative
Having a wide range of varied packaging options from ComPOST and ØPACK Range that can be a great alternative to otherwise, single use non biodegradable covers, aids the planet and the planet conscious in more than one way. Although the roots of this brand comes from a more personal emotion of doing the planet right and a drive to give back (even if just a little) more than one takes. With an approach, efforts and innovation such as theirs, it’s no surprise that in mere 2 years, brands like Rip Curl, L’Oreal, Karen Walker, and AllBirds have become one of their few customers.