Sustainable packaging not only benefits the environment; it also benefits your business. Post-consumer recycled plastic is made from containers that have been recycled by consumers following use, things such as water bottles and food containers. This is in contrast to post-process plastic, which is made from the waste produced during the manufacturing process at the molding facilities. PCR plastic packaging offers many benefits for environmentally conscious companies.
More Efficient Manufacturing Process
Manufacturing packaging from PCR plastic is much more energy efficient than using virgin resins. The entire process of collecting the post-consumer plastic, recycling it, and remanufacturing new products from it still uses 60% less energy than manufacturing plastic packaging from virgin resins. This could be a good way to significantly reduce your carbon footprint and stop putting carbon emissions into the atmosphere that contribute to global warming and climate change.
Less in Landfills and Cleaner Oceans
Using PCR plastic for packaging helps to divert single-use containers from landfills, where they can remain for hundreds, even thousands, of years. Plastics do not biodegrade, but they do break down into smaller and smaller pieces called microplastics. From the landfill, these microplastics can be swept away by rainwater into rivers and streams. Eventually, they can make their way into the ocean where they can be consumed by fish. The plastic is not digestible, so the microplastics remain in the fishes’ bodies. Larger animals that feed on the fish can then consume the microplastics, which can then move up the food chain. The long-term effects of microplastics consumed by animals have yet to be fully studied.
There are several different packaging options available with PCR plastic. Roll stock made from PCR plastic can be shaped into custom options such as sachet packaging. This may be a good option if your product is of a uniform shape and you have access to Form, Fill, Seal machinery that produces packages according to your specifications. PCR can also be used to produce preformed pouches, a good option, if you do not have access to FFS machinery or your product, consists of loose pieces in random shapes that you can simply pour into the preformed pouches.
Virgin resins are made from petroleum, a finite resource. Petroleum is becoming increasingly scarce, and therefore, petroleum products are becoming more expensive. In addition to energy savings, PCR plastic also offers cost savings because the materials from which it is made are readily available and easily accessible.
Additionally, most consumers — including 70% of Generation Z and 50% of Baby Boomers — are willing to pay extra for a product that impacts the environment in a positive way. Using sustainable packaging made of PCR plastic may help you to sell more of your product, and in the process, you build up goodwill with your customers so that they keep coming back to you and buying more of your products.
Making a profit by benefitting the environment can be immensely satisfying both professionally and personally. Find out more about the benefits of roll stock packaging and other options available from post-consumer recycled plastic.