February 7, 2019

Major Companies Aim To Go Zero Waste

food wasteIf you’ve worked in the food industry for any length of time, you know that it’s an industry with a tremendous amount of waste. And I’m not just talking about food waste – there is a ton of plastic that gets used one time and tossed out. So much that it can be painful to think about if you’re at all concerned about the environment.

While much of that is due to health rules and regulations we all face (which serve the very valid purpose of making sure our food doesn’t make consumers sick), I definitely cheer anytime I hear of companies doing what they can to minimize waste. So this article from Fast Company about the efforts that major CPG companies are undergoing to create minimal waste packaging made my heart sing.

I realize that smaller brands like yours and mine may not be able to go to these huge lengths but there are some interesting take-aways we can consider.

  • Loop looked at what the barriers were to zero waste from both a company and a consumer standpoint and then worked to solve those problems. You can’t change consumer behavior unless you make it easier for them.
  • There are some really interesting perks in the program for both the companies and the consumers that go beyond feeling better about your impact on the environment. Namely the idea that when the bag is returned it can automatically trigger that new same items are sent to you. For the company you get recurring revenue without having to work at it and as a consumer you don’t have to remember to pick up X at the store this week.
  • It’ll be interesting to see if the zero waste packaging converts consumers. I’m pretty environmentally-fanatical so to me it seems like a no brainer to switch brands to a zero paste packaging brand assuming the price and quality is comparable. However, you can never rely on your own opinion as representative of the larger consumer base so how will consumers as a whole respond. If there’s a really positive response that’s something we as smaller brands should take into consideration as we develop our products and packaging.

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