Eco-friendly Packaging

Green packaging materials for sustainable food deliveries

4 mins

The food and drink industry is very much driven by consumer demands and social trends. From products being shipped to supermarkets, to online fast-food deliveries, sustainability is a massive concern.

In fact, sustainability is a mega trend, and will continue to be for a long time. A survey conducted by Futerra found that 88% of consumers from the UK and USA would like brands to help them become more environmentally friendly in their daily lives. On top of this, 66% of consumers say they’re willing to pay premium for goods produced and sold by sustainable brands. That’s more than enough to make retailers and ecommerce food businesses aware of sustainability trends. So, what can be implemented to help meet these demands? Green packaging solutions.

In this article, we explore materials used in green packaging solutions and explain the benefits they bring to businesses shipping food and drink products.

Cornstarch – PLA packaging

For food and drink products, PLA packaging is incredible - we’re huge fans at Swiftpak and we’ve spoken about it many times before. We’ve even produced the ultimate guide to PLA. Take a look for yourself and find out why it’s such a hot topic in the industry.

PLA packaging is made from cornstarch, a natural and biodegradable material produced from corn. PLA is a great alternative to using packaging materials made from synthetic polymers like polystyrene, which is produced from petroleum, a non-sustainable item that can be expensive depending on the price of oil. 

When disposed of correctly, packaging materials made from cornstarch will break down into carbon dioxide and water. During this process, no harmful toxins are produced. However, without the right environment and conditions, cornstarch based packaging materials will take longer to decompose, especially without oxygen or light. Either way, cornstarch is a natural and biodegradable product that benefits our environment.

PLA packaging benefits

But why are cornstarch based packaging materials like PLA popular in the food and drink industry? Well, PLA has many advantages over synthetic polymer materials, including:

  • UV resistant
  • Food safe – PLA is Generally Recognised as Safe (GRAS)
  • Resistant to fats/oils
  • Low flammability
  • Compostable
  • High smell barrier
  • Thermal insulation properties

PLA packaging has a whole load of benefits that your businesses may be missing out on. If you’re shipping food and drink products on regularly, contact us at Swiftpak today and find out what PLA packaging could do for you. Alternatively, discover our thermal insulated packaging blog for information on PLA products, see our PLA sustainability comparison for an overview of eco-friendliness versus similar packaging materials. 

Paper & cardboard packaging

Everyone’s aware of the benefits using paper and cardboard packaging has on the environment. It’s made from organic sources, so is recyclable, compostable, and biodegradable. However, some people try to argue that paper-based packaging products contribute to the deforestation of our planet. When in reality, the planet has more trees than it did 35 years ago. If you’re still concerned, you can look into balancing your paper usage by replanting the trees used for your packaging. Contact us today for more information on this.

As an organic material, paper and cardboard packaging products are ideal for the food and drink industry. Paper is surprisingly versatile and there are many paper packaging products that offer protection for shipping

Paper void fill

Paper Void Fill can be used to fill the space within a package, offering protective cushioning for food products, while bespoke cardboard boxes can be designed with compartments to segment and protect foods. The options are endless with paper and carboard packaging. This green packaging material won’t be going anywhere soon.

Reinforced self adhesive paper machine tape

An incredibly effective way to secure your package is with reinforced self adhesive paper machine tape. It’s stronger than conventional machine tapes and helps protect the environment with its eco-friendliness. This product is also a great alternative to gummed paper tape – given no water is required upon activation, it makes applying tape to your carton both easier and cleaner! Great for environments where food is handled.

If you’re looking for green packaging products to protect your food and drink items during transit, take a look at our wholesale packaging range, or speak to an expert today.