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Approaches to more eco-friendly packaging design

The volume of packaging is constantly increasing. This applies equally to the product packaging we see on the shelves, transport packaging along the supply chain and shipping packaging for e-commerce. Some of the plastic packaging ends up in the environment, where it becomes microplastic - with uncertain effects on people and nature. And replacing plastic with paper and glass is not always more environmentally friendly. Instead, it is necessary to reduce the supply and demand of short-life packaging actively and systematically as a preventive measure. Companies are in a strategically important position to bring about effective changes.

The retail trade is already implementing individual measures to reduce packaging. However, a comprehensive strategy is missing. The research project Innoredux intends to illustrate to decision-makers how new and modified business models in the retail trade systematically and holistically contribute to less packaging.
Preliminary results are classes of a sustainability-oriented packaging improvements (SOPI taxonomy). The identified approaches describe six ways of achieving a more ecologically sound packaging alternative. The factsheet summarizes the most important findings of the SOPI taxonomy from the research report “Ansätze einer nachhaltigkeitsorientierten Verpackungsoptimierung“ by Schmidt, Bick and Rubik (2020). It is directed at decision-makers in the retail trade and aims to provide them with a quick and systematic overview of the range of more sustainable courses of action at packaging level. In addition to objectives and implications for companies, the approaches are described and illustrated by means of specific examples.

Download Factsheet (German, PDF, 0,2 MB)