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Shopping and the Environment in the New Millennium

Shopping and the Environment in the New Millennium

Whether calling out to Alexa from a sofa cushion, surfing the Internet, or merely viewing a new pop-up advertisement on social media, the results are in.  Online shopping is here to stay, and brick and mortar stores are feeling the heat. Add to that the adrenaline surge when a box filled with curated surprises lands on your doorstep. The “subscription addiction” is here to stay, and small parcel packaging and shipping is at an all-time high.

This new phenomenon presents both opportunity and challenge for the 21st century shopper. While the quick hit of new and exciting items is thrilling, the hit on the environment is undeniable.  Packaging created and manufactured to support the subscription industry is repeatedly discarded, and any packaging that is plastic-based adds to our landfills.  Recycling centers are overwhelmed with plastics – reporting that only 9% of plastics were actually recycled in 2017.

Even plastics using air-pillows for protection hope to minimize the affect on the environment, yet it is undeniable that all plastics are not biodegradable and stay in landfills for over 2000 years.

With subscription niches often touting wellness and positivity, the conscientious online shopper aligns more closely with biodegradable, eco-friendly options.  Corrugated mailers with matte finishes utilizing non-toxic inks and dyes, along with paper shred as loose-fill protective packaging, suits the conscientious subscription box patron.

According to the Global Parcel Delivery Report, over 44 million parcels are shipped via UPS, FedEx and USPS each day. That is a lot of disposable packaging!

Both corrugated small parcel boxes and Crinkle Cut and Very Fine loose-fill shred answer the need –You can protect your curated items, enhance them with color and spring, and provide a bonus curated item to your loyal patron.  Crinkle has secondary uses as pet bedding, sensory play for children, and garden composting.  Reduce, reuse, and recycle when you create your subscription surprise. Paper products continue to be the most environmentally conscious material for shipping and packaging, and your subscription shoppers will appreciate your environmental efforts.

Written by Jane Skalmoski, President & CEO of Spring-Fill Industries, LLC