Environmental issues are being talked about with increasing regularity in the modern world, as it becomes clearer and clearer that mankind’s actions are taking a real toll on the world we live in.
Science shows that the exponential expansion of industry and our huge reliance on fossil fuels are leading to rises in average temperatures across the world, putting countless natural ecosystems in jeopardy and threatening the very future of the Earth.
In response, countries all over the globe are trying to develop and implement new policies and ideas designed to protect the planet, and one of the key sustainability trends of recent years is a focus on reducing waste, by any means necessary.
Every single day, massive amounts of plastic and other materials are used and wasted unnecessarily, with many of those materials not actually being recycled and ending up in landfills or poisoning the world’s waters. Nowhere is this more evident than in the supermarket industry.
The Colossal Impact of Supermarket Waste
Countless people all over the world rely on supermarkets to buy groceries and daily essentials, but if you actually stop and take a look around your local supermarket, you might start to notice just how much plastic packaging is being used unnecessarily.
Everywhere, from the fresh fruit and vegetable section to the pasta aisle, you’ll see plastic bags, packets, and containers of all kinds, and while many people assume that these types of packaging can all be recycled and reused, the truth is often very different.
In reality, statistics show that only 14% of collected plastic is actually recycled, with the remaining 86% not being recycled at all, and millions of tons of plastic ending up in the ocean, killing marine life and taking many, many years to eventually degrade.
The Eco-Friendly Alternative
Fortunately, eco-friendly packaging is starting to become a more prominent sight in supermarkets worldwide, with many brands affirming their commitment to making positive changes and embracing eco-friendly alternatives in order to reduce the amount of waste they generate.
We’re seeing a lot of smaller brands in the food and drink sector make use of eco-friendly packaging, and it seems that big chain supermarkets are starting to follow their example, opting for more paper and card-based packaging options that offer protection to products while being fully recyclable.
So why is this such an important step and what are some of the benefits a supermarket can enjoy from investing in eco-friendly packaging? Here are just some of the top advantages:
Better for the Environment
Obviously, the number one benefit of using eco-friendly packaging from a purely ethical point of view is that it’s much better for the environment. Studies show that millions of tons of plastic waste ends up in oceans every year, with additional amounts entering landfills or simply being tossed out on the streets, polluting our waters and our world.
The dangers of plastic packaging for the health of the planet are immeasurable, with entire ecosystems being destroyed, food chains being contaminated, and natural spaces being poisoned and wiped out, all because of waste. By using eco-friendly packaging, supermarkets can reduce their own contributions to these global crises.
Brand Value and Identity
In this day and age, customers are becoming more discerning and selective about which brands they choose to shop with. Surveys show that there are people out there who will specifically research supermarket waste rates and eco policies and only choose to shop with brands that take action for the environment.
So it’s clear to see that investing in eco-packaging can also help to build the value of your brand and cement your status as an industry leader when it comes to matters of conservation and eco-friendly policy. Brands that make these sorts of changes are seen as more progressive, caring, and trustworthy, and this leads to more engagement from customers and better rates of sales in the long term too.
Increasingly, more rules and regulations are being set out in support of governmental policies and plan to reduce waste. A lot of countries around the world are trying to get their levels of pollution and plastic waste down, and they’re calling on big companies like supermarket chains to play a big part in this.
It’s highly likely that, in years to come, new rules will actually demand that supermarkets only produce a certain amount of plastic waste. So brands that take action now and start making use of paper and eco-friendly packaging today will essentially be able to futureproof their supermarkets and guarantee compliance with increasingly stringent rules.