Companies are increasingly building environmentally sustainable practices into their business strategies. If all else stays the same, consumers are generally driven by lower product and service costs. Demonstrating to consumers that a product or services can be both less expensive and environmentally sustainable is an immense strategic advantage. Lower product and service costs are quite obvious to consumers as they are comparing products prior to purchase. But demonstrating environmental sustainability of a product can be much more complex. The good news is that, according to the European Federation of Corrugated Board Manufacturers, consumers are even willing to pay a premium for cardboard box packaging if they know it’s derived from sustainable sources. Below we discuss a number of environmental benefits of cardboard boxes that are non technical and easy to communicate to consumers.
When consumers came to understand that a box, cardboard box, or other form of packaging contained an eco certificate or any of the other environmental features listed above, they were willing to pay a higher price. Packaging demonstrating energy saving resulted in the highest number of consumers willing to pay a premium, this premium ranged from five to 20 percent or more. Packaging such as cardboard box packaging containing a Co2 label resulted in the largest number of consumers willing to pay a 20 percent or more premium. In order for consumers to be willing to pay these premiums, any type of environmentally sustainable marketing must be clearly communicated and explained. Eco friendly based marketing must therefore be non technical and easily understandable in a short period of time.
Not all materials are 100 percent recyclable. Luckily cardboard is made from 100 percent natural resources. Corrugated box packaging consists of layers of papers which are held together by a starch type adhesive which is derived from renewable vegetable sources. The rest of the raw materials are derived from timber wood scraps. Additionally, cardboard boxes are 100 percent biodegradable.
There is never any need for cardboard to end up in the landfill. There are number of disposal methods. Instead of going to a landfill there is a ready market for used cardboard. Used cardboard can be sent back to paper mills and fed back into the system.
The next time you think about designing custom boxes, consider communicating information that informs consumers about the environmental benefits of cardboard box packaging, you may see a positive benefit to your bottom line.