The drive toward sustainability in packaging—beyond the quick wins

Updated : October 2020


  • Packaging professionals
  • Textile industry sustainability professionals
Over the past decade, the global packaging industry has enjoyed strong growth, driven by shifts in choice of substrates and expansion of new end-markets. Headline changes include the increased use of plastics to replace other substrates and accommodate consumers’ demand for convenience. The management of packaging waste is facing a crisis due to packaging recyclability, and packaging recycling, and leakage. The article examines the way FMCG companies address sustainable packaging challenges. FMCG companies and retailers are acting fast to go far beyond traditional lightweight initiatives. These commitments focus on emphasis on full recyclability and a significantly higher degree of recycled content, followed by a reduction of total plastics usage and by the innovation and promotion of change in the use of packaging. Moving forward, FMCG companies and retailers will require much closer collaboration with upstream players, packaging converters, and recyclers to successfully deal with these new challenges. One key area is the need to build infrastructure to manage increased recycling by employing more closed systems. Packaging companies can offer some no-regret moves, where they can double down on product segments where barriers to switching are low, and most of the work can be done by the individual converter and FMCG company without broader value chain coordination. They must also build an approach from the ground up, which will also require collaboration with upstream and downstream partners. To achieve significant progress toward sustainable packaging, changes to the broader packaging and recycling system will be required where development and implementation costs are also much higher by concerting effort around improving coordination across the value chain.

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Experiment with complete packaging redesigns

Rethinking of FMCG delivery chains

Integrating circular delivery chains and logistic support infrastricture

Innovative packaging application solutions offering higher recyclability

Cost- and as barrier-efficient switch in product packaging

Collaboration between FMCG companies retailers and packaging companies

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  1. The drive toward sustainability in packaging—beyond the quick wins
| Global


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