Most of the plastic used in the world is not recycled. In fact, National Geographic has discovered that a whopping 91% of the plastic we use is not re-used or recycled. Plastic use only began 60 years ago, yet since then we have managed to accumulate a staggering 8.3 billion metric tons of waste solely from plastic. Plastic can take over 400 years before it disintegrates, meaning something needs to change and quickly. That is why large companies have begun their fight against plastic. Here we look at why plastic is so popular and what is being done to minimize plastic waste.
Plastic has been used since the 1950s when we discovered it was a relatively inexpensive and easy way to protect everything from food to soap. Now, plastic is used everywhere we look. The food industry, in particular, has been connected to the largest amount of plastic waste and the Plastic Soup Foundation has discovered just how the oceans have been affected by this. Plastic is a great way to make food last longer but despite this, the amount of food waste has not decreased, rendering the use of plastic pointless.
Companies Leading the Way
Many companies are beginning to change the way they do things to minimize their own plastic waste. You may have noticed companies such as Starbucks and McDonalds have removed the use of plastic straws. This is just one way to begin the long battle to end the destruction that plastic is causing to wildlife and the environment. Many companies are now beginning to release 100% recyclable packaging into their businesses too. Packline USA, Werner & Mertz and Mondi are all large companies that are working together to use recyclable packaging. This has been shown to many consumers as one of the most important things to look for when buying products, as consumers begin to understand more about how plastic is affecting the world we live in.
So, what do packaging changes mean to businesses? As more consumers begin to show support towards recyclable packaging, the more businesses need to get behind this in order to sell their products and show their support towards the environment. Retailers need to be willing to change their ways and use recyclable or organic materials. Even smaller changes can make a world of difference, including the use of recycling bins in your warehouses or offices. If your business is looking for an easy way to make packaging smart, simple and better for the environment, then packaging automation by INSITE may be able to help you.
As recyclable materials become more popular, small and large businesses need to change their mindset to give the consumers what they want and to ensure that we do not overfill land sites with plastic. Have a look at what plastic you use around your home and in your business and look at how you can begin to minimize this waste.