Eco-friendly parcel packaging: what does it look like?
The best choice for eco-packaging a parcel is a strong and sturdy cardboard box. Here, however, we have several options - from ready-made cardboard boxes made to size to so-called second-hand packaging.
- Cut cardboardWhen choosing a cardboard box, it is worth deciding on one that will allow us to reuse it. A cut cardboard box will be suitable, allowing you to quickly pack and unpack your shipment without cutting it up and tearing off parts. Operating in an online business, it is a good idea to stock up on cut cartons of different sizes to suit individual products in advance. An individual shipper can leave himself undamaged cartons from shipments he previously received, so that he can still use them later.
- "Second-hand" cartonNowadays, companies are increasingly choosing to reuse cartons from, for example, returns, and use traditional adhesive tape as package security. In this case, it is worth going a step further and staying in the eco trend, replacing traditional adhesive tape with paper tape. It is just as strong as the traditional one, and has the added advantage of being biodegradable. What's more, we can brand the paper tape with brand logos or fashionable stamps.
An eco-friendly package is not just about the outer packaging, but also about properly securing the item and filling the free space in the package. What options does the sender have here?
The most popular package filler is bubble wrap. Unfortunately, this is not an environmentally friendly solution. However, the good news is that bubble wrap has an eco-friendly substitute in the form of, for example, honeycomb paper. Its specific structure in the form of so-called "meshes" will prove useful for securing all sorts of delicate items, An alternative to securing items with foil can also be kraft paper - the higher the grammage, the more resistant it is to mechanical damage. Fully biodegradable bubble paper will also work well as a filler.
Deciding on an environmentally friendly package filler, we really have a lot of room for maneuver. Importantly, such fillers are not only environmentally friendly and 100 percent biodegradable, but also look aesthetically pleasing.
What else do we have to choose from?
- So-called handmade fillers, i.e. any paper and biodegradable thing that will absorb shocks and that we can reuse rather than throw away, such as cardboard paper crumpled into a ball, paper towel rolls or empty egg cartons.
- Skropak, which is a lightweight, non-toxic and 100 percent biodegradable filler made from starch. It can be disposed of, such as by composting or dissolving in water.
- Wood wool, which is simply wood chips made from mixed wood. They not only help cushion the shipment, but have another advantage - they are a decorative element of the package. Woodwool, depending on your needs, can be dyed in different colors to make the parcel look more attractive.
- SizzlePak - a filler that is made from paper fibers. Most importantly, it is very efficient and increases in volume after unpacking.
- Eco-friendly air pillows - here we can choose those made of paper or made of potato starch.
- Flopak - it absorbs moisture, tightly fills the free space in the package and, of course, provides excellent cushioning. It does not crumble and is biodegradable (it comes from recycled polystyrene).
The journey of a package begins the moment it is packed and ends when it is delivered to the recipient. So is it enough to merely package a package to consider it fully environmentally friendly? Not quite. Eco-friendly shipping also means eco-friendly transportation. Here it's important to choose a courier company that offers green means of transportation. This is exactly how GLS Poland operates. In the fleet of transport partners cooperating with us, we have not only LNG-powered trucks, but also zero-emission e-vans, the number of which is constantly growing. In addition, in 2020 we introduced courier bicycle deliveries. Currently, more than a dozen bicycles are riding around the centers of Poland's largest cities. Our ambition is that by 2030 at least 50 percent of the vehicles in our fleet will be low- or zero-emission, and by 2035 every new transport vehicle will meet these conditions.