Why Companies Are Ditching Plastic for Paper Packaging

Companies Ditching Plastic for Paper

Sustainability and eco-friendly are more than just buzzwords to consumers who care about the planet. With over 8 million tons of plastic waste polluting our oceans every year, more companies are listening to consumer environmental concerns and are turning away from plastic in order to reduce their carbon footprint. This means companies are using more eco-friendly ways to package products that not only help the planet, but also overall consumer perception. When surveyed about brands that used eco-friendly packaging, 1 in 3 consumers preferred them and 35% were more likely to spend more money on the product in contrast to cheaper brands. First impressions mean everything when it comes to product packaging. Is your brand keeping these eco-friendly buyers in mind in its packaging design?

Plastic vs. Paper Packaging

Although plastic is easier to use and make, and it dominates packaging in the food and beverage industries, it uses fossil fuels to create it, which means it’s a nonrenewable source. It also doesn’t decompose quickly, which chases environmentally-conscious buyers away and loses an entire target market for your brand. Companies that still use plastic try to push recycling programs to encourage green buyers to purchase its products. However, not everyone follows through with properly recycling their plastic items, or recycling centers are not capable of recycling certain types of plastic materials. Ultimately, the plastic ends up in landfills and our oceans. In fact, a research study in 2018 concluded about 91% of plastic produced on the planet is not recycled. This is a striking number and it’s one of the reasons why companies are turning to paper instead.

In contrast to plastic, the paper packaging industry is on the rise. It’s projected to soar from $70 billion to almost $90 billion by 2024. Paper is cost-effective, easily recyclable, biodegradable, flexible and very customizable to meet consumer or product needs. Unlike some plastic packaging that requires scissors to open, paper is frustration-free and easily accessible for the elderly and people with physical disabilities. Also, to cut back on deforestation risks, strict sustainably sourced paper guidelines are in place for both paper companies and plantations for a well-rounded, eco-friendly movement across the world. Its benefits are not only good for the environment, but paper packaging also gives companies more creative freedom in designing their packaging materials.

Designing Your Paper Packaging

As more companies turn to digital technologies to design their packaging, customizing paper products are the way to go due to their practicality. If you’re considering making this switch or already have, you should ensure your packaging design is perfect. To make a good first impression to consumers, hiring a top-notch advertising agency can connect your brand’s image and tone perfectly with its products. This includes not only the shape of the package, but the colors, copy and images used in the product’s description. For example, if you’re an organic, eco-friendly food company, wouldn’t you want your packaging to reflect your brand’s purpose and quality? Of course. However, it requires strategy. A good package design should stand out on the shelf to the consumer, as well as creating an experience for them. Consumers like to know what they’re purchasing has a positive impact on the environment. Knowing the packaging is recyclable and biodegradable once they dispose of it gives the consumer peace of mind and instills customer loyalty for your brand.

Given the benefits of paper packaging, it makes sense why companies today are pulling away from plastic. Whether your brand is looking to make the switch from plastic to paper, has already made the switch, or is in need of a new brand design, it will reap the benefits for your business, your consumers and the environment.

Consider making recycling initiatives one of your company’s corporate social responsibilities (CSR). A CSR is an impressive business practice that depicts a positive social and environmental culture. Appleton can help you structure your company’s CSR culture online.

Is it time to recycle your old brand packaging? Appleton is an award-winning, full-service advertising agency in Orlando, Florida that specializes in delivering a strong, unified visual and verbal presence through branding and messaging. Appleton works with local, national and international clients to build a strong and cohesive brand that standardizes any company’s look and communications across print, web, social media and video. Your branding goals are worth a conversation: contact us at 407-246-0092 or info@appletoncreative.com.

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