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Most business should be switching to reusable packaging because in many countries set reuse targets for packaging and more are coming with the regulation on packaging and packaging waste from the E.U..

Switching to reusable packaging face multiples barriers.

  • Investment costs are significant (storage space, reverse vending machine, packaging, etc.).
  • Operation costs are significant (labour needed for collecting and washing packaging, etc.).
  • There is a trend to smaller portion packs (given smaller households).
  • Apparent cost of the product is higher (deposit)
  • Time and effort required to refill can be significant, limiting broad scaling.
  • Customer’s pain points are significant (“bring your own container, storage of used packaging, etc.).
  • Reusable packaging cannot always protect products as efficiently as single-use ones.
  • Reusable packaging are not allowed for certain product categories.
  • New reverse logistics flows need to be implemented.
  • Reusable containers are more difficult to handle (size, weight)
  • Long-distance transportation is high in CO2 emissions.
  • Standardized packaging often conflict with brand differentiation.
  • There is a lack of incentives for consumers, retailers and producers.
  • Reusable packaging may not be suitable for some products (small portion, exported product, etc.)
  • Lower brand visibility (fewer references, standardized packaging, etc.).
  • Consumers’ willingness to return can be limited.

To switch to reusable packaging producers should conduct 5 main tasks:

  1. Design efficient reusable solutions by defining refill location, operating model, return incentive, collection model and material
  2. Address existing barriers
  3. Leverage key enablers: customer demand, legislations, standardisation, goods adaptation, innovation, operations mutualisation digitalisation.
  4. Partner across the value chain, from tracking providers to packaging reconditioners.
  5. Assess economic and environmental impacts

We help our customers identify, qualify and implement reusable packaging solutions.

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Switching to reusable packaging