August 31, 2023

Eco friendly packaging design – The new norm! (2023 Update)

In this article, we will be diving deep into the most crucial facets of sustainable packaging and why it’s no longer just an option but a priority for both brands and consumers. The global sentiment around this issue has shifted dramatically, making eco-friendly packaging an imperative.

In our experience, the demand for sustainable packaging is becoming increasingly mainstream. When our client ‘Metreon’ approached us to design eco-friendly packaging for their power tools, it was reflective of a larger trend we’re seeing more frequently—both from individual customers and major retailers. More and more, we find that clients are not just requesting but insisting on sustainable options. Big retailers are also taking a stand by demanding more eco-friendly solutions and disallowing unnecessary packaging waste. This combined pressure from consumers and industry giants underscores that the move toward sustainable packaging is not just a fad but a significant shift in both consumer behaviour and business practices.

The Growing Importance Backed by Numbers

Do you still need more confirmation that environmentally friendly packaging has become the new standard? Consider these additional facts and statistics:

  • According to a Nielsen study, 66% of global consumers are willing to pay more for sustainable goods, over 50% of them are influenced by key sustainability factors
  • In a 2021 survey by Accenture, 83% of respondents believe it’s important or extremely important for companies to design products meant to be reused or recycled.
  • Data from Trivium Packaging reveals that nearly 74% of consumers are willing to pay more for sustainable packaging with one-quarter (25%) stating they are willing to pay an additional 10% or more for environmentally friendly packaging

These numbers underscore the urgent need for businesses to adapt to eco-conscious packaging solutions.

The Three Rs in Business

We all grew up with the mantra “reduce, reuse, recycle,” and it’s high time that businesses fully embrace these principles. Doing so not only contributes positively to the environment but can also increase brand loyalty among a growing population of eco-conscious consumers.

What is Sustainable Design in Packaging?

Sustainable packaging aims to inflict minimal environmental harm through innovative design and using environmentally-friendly materials. An excellent approach is to opt for clean, minimalistic designs that focus on function rather than excess. This is particularly relevant in the age of e-commerce, where less truly can be more.

Why Companies Can’t Afford to Ignore It

It’s not only the environmentally-conscious consumer who is clamoring for change. Significant market players are also leading the charge. Unilever Australia’s recent lobbying efforts with the Australian government to combat plastic pollution demonstrate:

  1. That even large corporations are seriously committed to environmental responsibility.
  2. The public image benefits of taking a stand on these issues can’t be ignored.
  3. Their actions will inevitably influence smaller and medium-sized businesses to adopt sustainable packaging practices.

Eco-Friendly Materials: More than Just Cardboard

While cardboard is indeed an excellent choice for sustainable packaging, being organic and easily recyclable, it’s not the only option out there. Materials like mushroom-based packaging, bioplastics, and even edible packing materials like seaweed are gaining traction.

Did you know?

  • The use of mushroom-based packaging has reduced energy consumption in manufacturing by approximately 70%, compared to traditional plastic packaging..

Strengths and Biodegradability of Cardboard

One of the most remarkable things about cardboard is its durability. Boxes with double or even triple walls can hold an immense amount of weight, and withstand significant blunt and penetrating forces. Plus, they are biodegradable to an extent of over 80%, offering a win-win solution that balances both environmental and practical considerations.


The landscape of packaging is undeniably changing in response to global efforts to combat climate change. Sustainable packaging is transitioning from being a nice-to-have to a must-have for businesses. With increasing public awareness, evolving government policies, and ever-more compelling data supporting its adoption, there has never been a more urgent time to make the shift to sustainable packaging.

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