Packaging has received increasing attention due to gradual bans on single-use plastics across the world and enhanced consumer awareness. The Mills Fabrica has launched the report “Rethink Packaging – A Guide for the Apparel and Agri-Food Industry” to understand how packaging’s environmental impact is being addressed across the value chain.
We had the opportunity to interview brands in reviewing their existing solutions and have identified common initiatives considered by brands to address packaging impact in their value chain. These include increasing the use of recycled materials, reducing the use of fossil fuel-based plastics, optimizing packaging design and the wish for greater industry collaboration.
Challenges exist that hinder companies from taking more sustainable practices. For example, there is inconsistent infrastructure such as collection and recycling facilities. Alternative materials such as bio-based plastics remain uncertain. And more incentives are needed to encourage behavioral change in the society and community.
Enhancements such as the implementation of life cycle assessment, education on alternative materials and collaboration between upstream and downstream stakeholders can make a difference.
We hope that this report can serve as an inspiration for the industry to rethink their approach with packaging and lead to more discussion on this topic. We look forward to seeing more industry collaboration in the future.