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The Rise of Sustainable Packaging

THE RISE OF

SUSTAINABLE PACKAGING

IS IT TIME FOR YOUR COMPANY TO GET ON BOARD?

By now, it’s virtually impossible not to know the state of affairs when it comes to our planet’s sustainability problem. Overpopulation is contributing drastically to issues like carbon emissions, excessive deforestation, and global warming. There’s an unnatural demand being placed on irreplaceable natural resources, as well.
Worst of all, the consequences of living this way for so long are beginning to manifest to a greater degree every year. This is especially the case when it comes to the depletion of natural resources. Recycling, reducing, reusing, and repurposing have become the order of the day for absolutely everyone as everyday households have grown more eco-conscious. However, these are especially important concepts for businesses of all types and sizes.
Here we’ll take a closer look at reusable, sustainable packaging options as they relate to major companies today, as well as explore how making them a part of your own business model can benefit your company.

WHEN DID THINGS GET SO OUT OF HAND?

Although no one truly knows exactly when the current problems with sustainability really started, many experts theorize that it was at some point during the 1970s. That was the point at which human consumption of natural resources really began to exceed the planet’s ability to sustain it. The problem has gradually continued to worsen ever since, which brings us to where we currently are.
We are now in a deficit, as far as how much resource consumption the planet can realistically support. However, humans aren’t doing enough to get things back to where they need to be. Unless some serious changes are made, and made now, the future doesn’t look terribly bright for humanity as a whole. Making better, more environmentally conscious choices when it comes to packaging is an excellent place to start.
HOW CAN REUSABLE PACKAGING HELP?

Although no one truly knows exactly when the current problems with sustainability really started, many experts theorize that it was at some point during the 1970s. That was the point at which human consumption of natural resources really began to exceed the planet’s ability to sustain it. The problem has gradually continued to worsen ever since, which brings us to where we currently are.
Packaging is a lot more than a mere vehicle for your items, though. The right packaging protects goods of all kinds – especially delicate ones like glassware or electronics – from damage during transit. It ensures that products can be stored safely for as long as they need to be before distribution. When it comes to the food industry, packaging is even a huge part of preserving freshness and preventing spoilage. As you can imagine, that adds up to a lot of packaging being manufactured, used, and ultimately disposed of.
Right now, the vast majority of our packaging models are still based on disposable single-use options that are either thrown away or recycled after they’ve served their purpose. While recycling packaging waste most certainly is a step in the right direction, reusable options take things one step further. Reusable packaging is meant to be used multiple times over the course of many months or years. When it is no longer needed or wanted, it can be resold to other facilities or to suppliers that specialize in refurbishing and reselling sturdy, high quality packaging.
WHAT COUNTS AS “SUSTAINABLE PACKING”?
The term “sustainable” isn’t just an arbitrary one. There are certain criteria that packaging needs to meet before it can rightfully be considered sustainable. According to the Sustainable Packaging Coalition (SPC), they are as follows:

  • The packaging in question must meet market criteria when it comes to both per formance and cost.
  • It must be deemed beneficial and safe for both communities and individuals over the entire course of its life cycle.
  • It must make use of only renewable energy when it comes to manufacturing, transportation, recycling, and so forth.
  • It must fully maximize the use of only recycled or otherwise renewable materials.
  • It may not be made or transported using technology not deemed clean and ethi cal.
  • It must be designed in such a way that it optimizes both material and energy.

Sustainable packaging options can also be ranked and compared to one another according to a number of criteria. These include, but are not necessarily limited to, cost-effectiveness, ability to fulfill specific mechanical requirements, and overall functionality.

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF REUSABLE CONTAINERS FOR YOUR COMPANY?

If you’re unfamiliar with the types of reusable packaging in use today, then it’s understandable if you have a hard time picturing them. Many people automatically think of the large cargo containers found on freight ships and trains. While there certainly are freight-appropriate options available to today’s eco-conscious businesses, it’s important to understand that reusable packaging covers a lot more ground than that.
In short, there are as many different containment options out there as there are types of businesses out there. Whatever your product, there’s an option out there that’s right for your exact needs. Going reusable isn’t just great for the environment, either. It’s also fantastic for your bottom line.

1. SAVE MONEY ON PACKAGING COSTS

While it’s true that the up-front costs of reusable packaging options are probably going to be much higher than those attached to corrugated cardboard boxes and other common options, it’s important to consider the long term.
Reusable packaging doesn’t come attached to a recurring cost the way disposable options do, so they quickly pay for themselves. Plus, if you ever want to change things up when it comes to the packaging your company relies on, you can recoup some of the costs of your original materials by selling them back to a container re-seller and reinvesting your savings in your next set of options.

2. SAVE ON LABOR COSTS

Disposable packaging doesn’t just cost you more money in containment costs over time. You ultimately wind up paying more in labor costs, as well. Disposable containers ultimately need to be broken down and prepared for recycling by members of your workforce. Reusable containers help free your workers up for other tasks.
If you pay a disposal fee to a third party in order to have your broken down boxes taken away, you can save money there, as well. When you also consider the money you’ll save on the packaging, it’s not hard to see how reusable packaging can do a lot to improve your bottom line.

3. IMPROVE PRODUCT QUALITY

Traditional packaging options usually get the job done when it comes to getting merchandise to its destination in one piece. However, there are definite limits to how efficiently you can expect cardboard boxes to perform. There’s always the chance they’ll be dropped, mishandled, or exposed to moisture accidentally before they arrive.
Plastic totes, sturdy resin crates, and more are just as effective when it comes to containing your products. However, they’re a lot better equipped to stand up to potential abuse. Your customers are more likely to receive their shipments in pristine condition, allowing you to save even more money in product replacement costs. Your customers are sure to be impressed when they see you’ve gone the extra mile.

4.EXPAND ON HOW YOU DO BUSINESS

Reusable packaging is far from one-size-fits-all. As touched on above, there are near limitless options available to choose from. Safely transport just about any product with ease. Add to your catalog or your service repertoire with confidence, thanks to an expanded selection of containment options. You’re only limited by your own vision for your company’s future.

5.COMPLIANCE WITH WASTE REGULATIONS

There are many companies and businesses of all sizes that need to consider legal obligations when it comes to waste production and disposal. If this is a concern for your company, then it’s definitely in your best interests to consider adopting reusable packaging as an option. If it’s not yet a concern, then it’s nevertheless a great idea to think ahead and adopt clean, sustainable practices before it’s required of you, legally speaking.
Failure to fully comply with regulations isn’t just about facing legal penalties or steep fines. It’s also about your reputation. It’s never a good idea to let colleagues and customers think of your business as an entity that doesn’t care about the planet or about following the rules.

6.GAIN A NEW SELLING POINT

Regardless of the business you’re in, it’s simply not possible to underestimate how important environmentally safe business practices are to people today. Adoption of reusable packaging and sustainable business practices in general will allow you to portray your company as environmentally responsible to the general public.
People like to feel good about where and how they do business or spend their money. They want to associate with brands and products that are invested in making wise choices and doing the right thing. Why shouldn’t your company be the entity that gives people that feeling?

At the end of the day, you and your company only stand to benefit from making the switch to sustainable packaging. You’ll make more money, improve relations with your customers, and do your part to save the planet, all thanks to one simple decision.

WHAT DOES THE FUTURE OF SUSTAINABLE PACKAGING LOOK LIKE?

Environmental issues like climate change and depletion of the world’s natural resources are more than troubling these days. They’re very real concerns that need to be addressed right now. Modern businesses have an important part to play. They can either become a big part of the problem or a big part of the solution. Sustainable, reusable packaging is a wonderful way to be part of the solution.

Sustainable packaging is quickly becoming the new norm as a result. Within the last six years, the usage of sustainable packaging by businesses of all types has risen by more than 11%. These numbers are only expected to rise further as we move forward into a new future where environmental consciousness is more and more the norm, rather than the exception.

WHERE TO FIND THE BEST SUSTAINABLE PACKAGING OPTIONS

Realizing that it’s time to bring your company into the 21st century with reusable packaging options is a no-brainer. Figuring out where to get your supplies is another story altogether. Thankfully, the process has a lot in common with the process of choosing any other company with which to do business.

Start by choosing a company that’s been in business for a long time and which has a wonderful reputation to match. They should be experienced when it comes to offering solutions for businesses in your exact industry. They should have excellent ratings when it comes to organizations like the Better Business Bureau, as well.

You’ll also want to choose a retailer that buys packaging, as well as sells it, as this is the most environmentally responsible option of all. When you’re finished with your packaging or ready to make the switch to another option, you can sell it back to the same company you already know and trust. From there, it can be refurbished and resold to other companies that will make the same excellent use of it that you have.

Last, but definitely not least, look for an entity that really cares about their customers and which offers service to prove it – an entity like ContainerExchanger.com. ContainerExchanger.com offers an extensive variety of different containment options, and it caters to thousands of businesses across multiple industries. Whether you’re looking to outfit your office and stockroom or supply multiple shipping warehouses with exceptional packaging options, you’re sure to find the right solution for you. Explore the possibilities today!

How Container Exchanger Is Changing the Commercial Recycling Game

How Container Exchanger Is Changing the Commercial Recycling Game

When your company is done with your shipping container and bulk bags, what do you do? If you throw them out, they just end up in a landfill. Now, imagine that every company in the manufacturing industry does this; think of the waste that is being accumulated each year!

More importantly, how many of these shipping containers are broken or unusable anymore? Chances are, just because your business no longer has a need for them, these materials can still provide a use to others in the industry. The fact is that most transportation materials are made to withstand long-term use, and contents can expect to travel and arrive in safety.

Therefore, your company may be adding to the already enormous amount of waste materials the manufacturing industry produces. That isn’t exactly a beneficial business practice for your company.

Maybe your company doesn’t throw out materials you no longer need. Perhaps you keep them in storage, only to find the containers collecting dust. This isn’t necessarily harming the environment, but it isn’t bringing your company any money, either.

What is the solution for these shipping materials? Even if you are a sensible business owner who strives to find a green solution to everything, and likes to reduce your company’s carbon footprint, certain situations may call for a still usable container to be tossed out.

The Reason for Waste

You may be wondering, if these shipping materials are made to endure a long life, why do businesses stop using them or make upgrades? There are many reasons why a company may need a new container even when the current container has plenty of life left in it.

Perhaps newer generations of the container offer better features. Or, perhaps, it is no longer profitable for the company to continue their business.

When a company goes out of business or merges with another, usable and durable materials end up collecting dust or taking up space in a landfill. When containers meet the end of the line in this manner, not only does the company lose money, but this practice also harms the environment.

What You Can Do

A sensible approach to giving those still-usable shipping materials a long life is to make use of commercial recycling. Brand new material is expensive and, if you only need the container for a short period of time, pretty useless.

Container Exchanger wants to offer the manufacturing industry a solution to this problem. Commercial recycling is an environmentally friendly way to reduce waste products and decrease your company’s spending.

So, back to those still-usable containers that businesses no longer have a need for. Our professionals help these business owners dispose of the materials in a less harmful way by locating another company that is in need of a shipping container.

This is a practice that saves your company money, while at the same time helps the industry reduce waste. Talk about a win-win!

Container Exchanger Is Here to Help

Don’t end up like the rest of the manufacturing world. Strive for the green solution whenever possible. Container Exchanger ensures that all used and refurbished materials still have a long life ahead of them. For whatever reason, when company A no longer needs those materials, our experts help list the container(s) on our site in the hopes of providing company B an alternative to buying brand new containers.

Why might company B want to buy used material? As stated before, these types of materials often get thrown out, even though they are perfectly good to use. Plus, company B wants to keep their bottom line in mind, while transporting their goods and products safely.

Purchasing a used container through Container Exchanger serves both those purposes. We ensure the supplies are still able to perform safe shipment of products, while your company spends less.

Additionally, depending on your situation, a new shipping container is not needed. For single use or short-term use, a used container is in your best interest. Plus, once you’re done, you can sell it through Container Exchanger, and we will find another company who needs it.

So, now that we have your attention, and you see we have your company’s bottom line in mind, explore the different products and options that are changing the commercial recycling game.

Bulk Containers

Bulk containers have the largest variety to choose from for your heavy-duty shipping needs.

Pallet Containers

Collapsible pallet and bulk plastic containers are great for storing materials such as pellets, powders, produce, and other manufactured goods. Pallet containers are great options for any of your products or materials that require safe and protective storage.

Our used bulk containers are all extremely durable, meaning they can be reused time and time again. Most of these pallet containers are heavy-duty, and some models/sizes can hold up to 2500 pounds. No matter what size option your company needs, our pallet containers are easily repairable, and provide easy shipment and storage. Choose from a variety of collapsible and non-collapsible containers, with a selection of fully sealed, vented, drop door models available.

Metal Bins

Metal storage bins are the ideal shipping container for your castings and scrap metal. Even though these bins are recycled, they are extremely durable. Your company can depend on our metal bin options for safe delivery while keeping all your goods in place during transit.

Our metal bins are solid-steel sided, but there are options of customizing the bins if your needs require different materials and dimensions.

Wire Baskets

If you need shipping containers for castings and scrap metals, but find you need something more flexible than metal bins, wire baskets may be the right option for you. Our used wire baskets have the same durability as metal bins; however, the wire mesh grid allows a more visible and accessible storage of your industrial products.

Wire baskets come in a variety of options, including collapsible, drop door, rigid, stackable, and heavy-duty choices. These storage options will not only save you money, but also space in your warehouse.

Gaylord Boxes

Our used Gaylord boxes can hold just about any material you may need with a maximum of up to 2800 pounds. Made with durability in mind, the sturdy outside walls hold layers of cardboard inside, for secure storage and transport of the material within.

Wood Crates

Used wood crates are one of the best transporting and storage containers your company can keep on hand. Because of import regulations, wood crates are heat-treated, making them ideal for reusable shipping crates.

What makes wood crates a smart business option, when bought used? They are extremely affordable and work great for one-way shipments. These containers also make storing, carrying, and handling easy and efficient.

Bulk Bags – FIBC

Bulk bags or super sacks, jumbo bags, flexible intermediate bulk containers (FIBC), or any other name you might call these bulk containers—these make for an excellent low-cost packaging option.

The woven plastic material is durable, and the lift straps make these bags easy to fill, lift, and empty. To save money and use a green option, choose from our used bulk bag options, such as Hazmat bags, U.N. bulk sacks, flow-through jumbo sacks, spout bottom bags, super large sacks, sprout top bags, lined bags, and food grade bulk sacks.

IBC Totes

For the storage and transportation of fluid products, our wide range of used IBC totes is the best selection of IBC tanks. With the option of used (non-refurbished) or refurbished, you are able to select from these sizes:

  • 275-gallon standard and refurbished totes
  • 275-gallon good grade totes
  • 330-gallon standard gallon totes
  • 330-gallon refurbished totes
  • 330-gallon food grade totes

Drums

Whether you select a plastic barrel, metal drum, tank, or fiber drum, your chemicals and hazardous materials are transported securely in our used and refurbished drum containers.

No matter your needs, whether shipping food grade products, liquid supplies, or chemicals, selecting a used drum will provide a cost-effective and green solution for your business.

Insulated Containers

For those temperature-sensitive goods like dry ice and seafood, insulated containers will ensure the thermal protection of your products during transportation. Since the preservation of the products is highly important, these containers are made for long-term use, and provide a flexible choice to ship and store your goods.

Hoppers and Silos

Hoppers and silos come in sizes large enough to hold items such as animal feed/grains, pellets, milk, water, and juices. Likewise, they also come in small enough sizes to feed an injection mold machine.

Our used hoppers and silos come in a variety of styles and sizes, such as seed bins and dumping hoppers. No matter your needs, Container Exchanger has the green solution for your transport needs.

Pallets

Pallets of all materials make for versatile transportation and storage containers, often saving space in warehouses.

Plastic Pallets

These pallets prove to be highly popular reusable shipping options for companies in the manufacturing industry. This is because they are lightweight, while also durable enough to protect your materials during transportation.

Design, style, and size of plastic pallets all vary, making them great used options for most of your shipping needs.

Metal Pallets

Aluminum and stainless steel metal pallets have the longest lifespan of all available pallets. Due to their metal structure, they can be reused for years on end. However, your company needs to pay close attention when choosing the correct metal bin for your needs.

Stainless steel and aluminum pallets are usually fully welded, and resist corrosion and heat. This makes them an excellent container for the shipping and handling for meatpacking, food processing, and pharmaceutical industries.

Wood Pallets

Wooden pallets are sensible for reuse because they have to be heat treated, for import reasons. This means they rarely are returned to the sending company; therefore, they are solid options for reuse.

Thanks to their durable design, they can carry loads up to 10,000 pounds or more. Purchasing used wood pallets reduces costs and saves storage space. For shipments of heavy loads, wood pallets make a sensible choice.

Carts

Carts are made for the transportation of supplies and products within the warehouse, store, building, or office space.

Security Carts

Security carts work best for personal and retail, distribution, restaurant and food court industries. With lockable floors, walls, and roof panels, you can rest assured your valuables are stored and transported in a safe manner.

Transport Carts

Transport carts are portable shelving units that work for the warehouse, plant nursery, or restaurant. The shelving can be either wire or mesh, and the design is ideal for moving items within your warehouse, property, or space.

Transport carts have features like modulate shelving that allow you to adjust the shelf placement, and tow bars to link and tow several carts at once, that make them great for all your business needs.

Laundry Carts

Laundry carts are used in the hotel, resort, and institutional industries. Our selection of used and refurbished laundry carts is excellent for the use of transporting, storing, and sorting linens. There are taller options, reaching six feet, along with removable and lockable panels that ensure the safety of all materials inside.

The Takeaway

No matter what industry your company is in, choosing a used or refurbished shipping container is the beneficial way to reduce your carbon footprint and save as much money as possible.

Let Container Exchanger aid you in finding the right materials for your business. Choose from the many used bulk containers, pallets, and carts we have available. And, remember, when you have exhausted all uses for your container, turn to us again, and we will help you sell it to another company. Set an example within the industry and use the green solution to purchasing your shipping materials—every time.

How Container Exchanger Is Changing the Commercial Recycling Game