Product packaging currently plays a major role in consumer decisions than what businesses might think. A product’s packaging communicates many factors, from what the product can do for the customers to the company’s values. Especially in the healthy food and drink categories, shoppers seek packaging that keeps freshness, taste, and nutrients and packaging that aligns with ingredients for brands.
Consumers today even look at whether the packaging is recyclable or not. More than half of the consumers say that they look for brands that introduce the recyclable packaging or the less use of plastic in packaging. Whether it relates to recyclability or the use of less plastic, grocery shoppers say that it is extremely important to choose foods or drinks that are packaged responsibly. Just over half of the grocery shoppers agree that their purchases of a particular or quantity of packaging have changed.
Packaging materials can be recycled if it can be collected, sorted, reprocessed and eventually used in the manufacture of another product. The rate of recycling varies by type of material, with the highest metal, glass and paper collection and recycling rates. In general, the plastics collection and recycling rates are still very low.
In London, Starbucks tested a latte levy on its single-use paper cups to reduce waste and McDonald's replaced plastic straws with paper straws in all its restaurants in Britain and Ireland. Keep America Beautiful is a pro-recyclable organization that guides consumers as well as food industries about their roles in waste reduction, increased recyclability, and supporting the sustainability of the packaging. Closed-loop recycling is essentially a production process in which waste is collected, recycled, and used for the production of new products after consumption. It enables consumers, manufacturers, and recyclers to work together in bringing a new product by identifying the usable materials from a waste stream.
Consumers believe that the conservation of natural resources is a great way to support the environment, but that packaging materials are also reused through recycling. When companies seek ways to reduce the production of packaging, consumers should also consider diligently recycling their packaging after every meal and drink.