Can Food Packaging be Plastic-free?
Food packaging is a particular challenge in the bid to rid the world of plastic. It is fair to say that plastic can play a vital role in helping to keep food fresher for longer. In this respect, it reduces food waste, another environmental problem.
Whilst there are a growing number of bio-degradable alternatives to plastic being developed, not all are suitable, proven or affordable for use with food products. To highlight this issue, we look at a company that is completely committed to minimising their environmental.
Huel – Environmental Champions in Packaging and Beyond
One of our customers, Huel, set out to provide nutritiously complete food, which would aid physical performance. They wanted to offer their customers a convenient, fast way of consuming a healthy, balanced diet. From the outset, they were driven to achieve this whilst making the smallest possible impact on animals and the environment.
All Huel products are made from 100% vegan products, which have been ethically and sustainably sourced. They are free from soya, lactose and GMOs and approved by nutritionists. From the Head Office in Tring, the team have successfully sold their products in 80 countries around the world. Even with rapid growth, the company have retained their focus on fulfilling environmental goals, but what about the packaging?
Cardboard Packaging Fits the Bill
Huel approached Aylesbury Box Company to discuss cardboard packaging solutions. Corrugated cardboard is known as a sustainable packaging material, which can be recycled. The fibres can be reused many times over to produce new boxes. We could also satisfy the company’s requirement to print the boxes with environmentally-friendly, vegan inks.
In addition to retail packaging, also discussed box fillers with Huel. In some product packaging, cardboard inserts are used. These add to the presentation, whilst also keeping the products in place during transportation. In the larger delivery boxes, untreated brown paper is used, which is another circular economy packaging material.
If your brand is reviewing its packaging design or materials, get in touch with Aylesbury Box Company. We have the expertise to advise on the design, manufacture and print of cardboard packaging, to help you make informed decisions. We are also actively working to build on our green credentials.
Seeking a Viable Alternative to Plastic Packaging
If any company was committed to finding a viable and sustainable packaging, it is Huel, yet their pouches are still made from plastic.
The company are actively investigating other packaging materials, but none have yet delivered a sufficiently robust solution. There is always a compromise. For example, the split rate of a biodegradable pouch is significantly higher, this increases the volume of damaged pouches, which contributes to higher waste and transportation costs.
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Aylesbury Box Company is keen to encourage companies to switch to cardboard packaging whenever possible. Our cardboard boxes are low-cost, protective, versatile and sustainable. We do, however, recognise that cardboard is not ideal for all products. Companies need to consider the entire environmental impact and at times, plastic is the best option.
We champion the values that underpin the Huel brand. They are a locally-based company with a strong vision and an exceptional commitment to sustainability. We are proud to play a small part in their operations.