How to incorporate sustainable packaging into your business

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The global consumer push for sustainability has steadily risen for several years, and the situation in emerging Asian markets, including Indonesia, is no exception. According to a survey by Bain & Company, 58% of respondents in Indonesia started buying sustainable products in the past two years, and 96% of respondents were willing to pay more for such products. Similar responses were obtained from survey respondents in China, India, and Japan, some of the top importers of goods from Indonesia.

These eco-conscious consumers expect businesses to take responsibility for their environmental impact and adopt more sustainable practices, like sustainable packaging. To stay relevant and competitive, companies in Indonesia need to adapt to this growing expectation. In doing so, they can distinguish themselves in a saturated and fast-growing market and cultivate more robust and dependable long-term relationships with environmentally-aware consumers.

Understanding sustainable packaging

According to the Indonesian Plastic Industry Association (INAPLAS) and Central Statistics Agency (BPS), an estimated 64 million tonnes of plastic waste are generated annually within the country alone, including packaging materials. 3.2 million tonnes of this waste is further dumped into the sea, resulting in pollution and untold consequences for Indonesia and the region’s ecosystem and wildlife.

Sustainable packaging, also known as eco packaging or green packaging, is a solution that aims to reduce the environmental impact of packaging materials and processes. In doing so, the hope is that situations like the one described above will improve, resulting in better environmental and social outcomes for society.

According to the Sustainable Packaging Coalition, sustainable packaging should meet several key characteristics, including:

  • Sourced from renewable or recycled materials 

  • Manufactured using clean production technologies and practices

  • Designed to optimise materials and energy

  • Recyclable or compostable after use

With these principles in mind, let's explore how your business can incorporate sustainable packaging and eco-friendly shipping supplies into your everyday operations.

Practical tips for incorporating sustainable packaging into your business

1. Choose eco-friendly containers

Opt for eco-friendly shipping boxes or eco shipping boxes made from recycled, sustainably sourced, or compostable materials. These are often made from recycled cardboard or paper, biodegradable films, recycled plastics, or compostable moulded pulp – reducing the consumption of raw materials and decreasing your business’ carbon footprint.

2. Opt for eco-friendly shipping packaging

The shipping process involves not just cardboard boxes but other packaging or related materials. This means choosing recycled or biodegradable mailers, eco-friendly envelopes, and biodegradable packing tape.

3. Use eco-friendly bubble wrap and padding

Traditional bubble wrap and padding materials can take centuries to decompose, contributing to landfill waste. Instead, consider eco-friendly bubble wrap made from recycled or biodegradable alternatives, or paper-based options like honeycomb paper or corrugated cardboard.

4. Reduce packaging size

Select packaging materials that optimise space and minimise waste. By using eco-friendly packaging materials like biodegradable or compostable peanuts, you can protect your products while reducing your packages’ overall size and weight. This, in turn, lowers your shipping costs and carbon footprint.

5. Encourage reuse and recycling

Educate your customers about recycling and reusing sustainable packaging materials. Include instructions for recycling or repurposing packaging materials on your packages or through your website and social media channels. If you have a return policy, include instructions for reusing the original packaging materials when submitting a return.

Partner with DHL Express for sustainable shipping solutions

To reduce your environmental impact further, consider partnering with a logistics provider that prioritises sustainability. DHL Express is committed to implementing sustainable shipping solutions and investing in innovative technologies to minimise the carbon footprint of international shipping and logistics operations. Our fleet of electric vehicles and the use of sustainable aviation fuels help us reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improve air quality, and contribute to a greener future.

By partnering with DHL Express, you can leverage our sustainable shipping solutions and showcase your commitment to implementing sustainability as a cornerstone of your business strategy. This aligns with the growing consumer demand for environmentally-responsible businesses and helps you stand out among competitors.

Adopting sustainable packaging and eco-friendly shipping supplies is crucial for businesses in Indonesia to remain competitive and relevant in today's environmentally-conscious market. Open a business account today to explore DHL Express’ sustainable solutions for long-term business success.