We must discover ways to minimize our consumption while plastic fills the seas, landfills, and even the air we breathe. The source is an important place to start. Plastic waste management is already being reformed in product manufacture, particularly in the area of packaging. However, there is always more that can be done to prevent waste and minimize the massive amount of plastic that now litters our globe. Here’s a quick look at how to cut down on plastic container and packaging waste in the manufacturing industry.
First and foremost, why is it so critical to address this issue? It is critical since this type of plastic garbage accounts for a large amount of municipal solid waste. Plastic container industry alone produced around 14.5 million tons of garbage in 2018. The Environmental Protection Agency defines container and package trash as products that are expected to be discarded in the same year that the contents are consumed. Soft plastic food wrapping, polyethylene terephthalate soft drink and water bottles, shipping parcels, and other items fall into this category.
Recently, there has been an alarming increase in shipping and packing items, which are designed to preserve the products within. Online shopping and food distribution have both contributed to the surge. In reality, according to a 2021 analysis, Amazon’s plastic packaging trash creation increased by 29% during the COVID-19 pandemic compared to 2019 forecasts.
As the world’s population grows, so will the amount of waste caused by food delivery unless it is addressed today. Soft plastic packaging is used heavily in this business, which is difficult to recycle. These multi-material products, known as film or “flexible packaging,” are designed to keep pathogens and moisture out and account for nearly 50% of food packaging and 41% of all packaging.
What can be done to change the packaging of these products in order to reduce waste? To begin, producers must do everything possible to better manage their plastic trash. Implementing a tight reduce, reuse, and recycle waste control program is one option. Another option is to develop more ecologically friendly methods and materials.
Materials like glass, paper, and cardboard can be recycled more easily, however they may not be as cost-effective. There are also new methods for reducing waste and energy consumption while maintaining secure, food-safe packaging. Ultrasonic sealing, for example, can be used instead of thermal sealing. When used in conjunction with paper products, this strategy can help companies accomplish their sustainability goals by resulting in a more sustainable product.
Unfortunately, there is no simple solution to the problem of plastic trash contamination. Much work has to be done around the world to undo the damage that has already been done. Nonetheless, a difference may be made now by focusing on updating packaging at the source and applying cutting-edge production procedures.
Please check the resource below for further information on how to reduce plastic packaging waste.