Over the last few years, the COVID-19 pandemic has had an extreme impact on consumer and shopping behaviour, drastically changing retail and eCommerce packaging.
Shops up and down the country were forced to close down due to government-imposed lockdowns, and several brick and mortar stores had to adapt their business to work online in order to continue bringing in sales and therefore income.
We’ve seen a knock-on effect in packaging for the retail and eCommerce industry. Find out more below.
Sustainable packaging will become commonplace
Attitudes towards sustainable packaging are slowly changing for the better.
With the Plastic Packaging Tax coming into fruition in April 2022, eCommerce and retail businesses dealing with more than ten metric tonnes of plastic packaging in a 12-month period will have no choice but to opt for plastic packaging with over 30% recycled material otherwise, they risk a fine.
The aim of this tax is to increase the demand for recycled plastic (therefore reducing the demand for non-recycled plastic), thus decreasing the amount of plastic ending up in landfills.
As more retail and eCommerce companies do all they can to meet this levy, we predict this change in attitude will impact other packaging materials, as businesses start to look at how they can reduce their impact on the environment overall.
… and attitudes towards plastic packaging will change
As more retail and eCommerce companies move over to plastic packaging with 30% recycled material, we suspect there will be a knock-on impact as they offer instructions to their consumers on how to recycle or even repurpose this packaging.
As a result, the attitudes towards plastic will change, because people will know what is recyclable and how to recycle
We’ve all seen news articles where journalists blame plastic for the demise of the earth. All
too often, plastic gets a bad (w)rap and is seen as the root of all evil, but that’s not always the case.
Plastic is a really useful material that offers a vast range of benefits including:
- Durability - the right plastic packaging can keep foodstuff fresh and protect products such as electronics, ensuring your products turn up to your customers or store shelves in the best shape possible.
- Plastic is lightweight - according to Plastics Europe, “over 50% of all European goods are packaged in plastics, they account only for 17% of the total packaging weight on the market.” This means lighter loads are transported and fewer lorries are needed, reducing transportation costs and emissions.
- Plastic can be sustainable - recycling rates in the UK are rising - whilst we only recycle 45% of plastics in the UK, this figure is slowly growing. Additionally, most types of plastic are recyclable.