PaperAge Magazine


Top Tips to Help Reach Your Corporate Sustainability Goals

Sustana Fiber For food and beverage manufacturers, it's important to recognize that packaging is an integral part of their sustainability efforts.

Oct. 7, 2019 - Consumers' expectations and demand for sustainable products and services are increasing. Shoppers are paying attention to many facets of how companies do business, from how they sourced their food to the packaging they used.

The smart — and most successful — companies have been paying attention to this growing trend and setting goals for their corporate sustainability efforts. Giants like Starbucks and McDonald's have made moves to make their operations more sustainable, in part through implementing goals to use packaging made with recycled content.

For food and beverage manufacturers, it's important to recognize that packaging is an integral part of their sustainability efforts. Especially as takeout food and delivery apps climb in popularity, and more companies experiment with alternatives for traditional to-go containers, there is an opportunity to use environmentally friendly packaging made with recycled content which is a crucial step toward meeting sustainability goals.

As companies look to set — and meet — meaningful corporate sustainability goals, here are some tips:

1. Consider the entire lifecycle of a product.

Studies have shown that the greenhouse gas emissions leading to climate change are largely linked to energy used in the product lifecycle. In other words, everything it takes to produce a product, including getting it to the shelf, takes energy — so the smarter it's made, the more sustainable the product.

Measuring the environmental impact of packaging means looking at its entire life cycle, and through the entire supply chain. Consumers and businesses alike are often focused on what happens to the paper container, cup and packaging used to hold their food and drinks after they're done using them. That's important, but we should consider how it got there, too.

2. Work with like-minded partners.

As you're identifying suppliers to help you meet your sustainability goals, look for those that carefully measure the environmental impact of their businesses, transparently sharing their results. For example, as part of our overarching Sustainability Strategy, we conducted a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) to measure the environmental impact of our EnviroLife™ recycled fiber, throughout the entire journey. Accordingly, EnviroLife uses 9x less water than average virgin fiber.

Additionally, it is important to consider every step of bringing products to market, sourcing post-consumer recycled content from the “urban forest” (sorted office papers, paper cups and cartons) to a state-of-the-art proprietary recycling process that minimizes water usage, energy usage and climate change.

3. Remember that sustainability does not come at the cost of quality.

High-quality and sustainable recycled fiber is available for food and beverage packaging manufacturers who want to create greater sustainability for their business.

The impact of our EnviroLife recycled fiber on climate change is 26 percent lower than virgin, or non-recycled, paper fibers. Along with being more sustainable than virgin fiber alternatives, this 100% post-consumer recycled fiber is also compliant with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) standards for food grade packaging. The result? Environmentally friendly paper cups, cartons, food wraps and containers.

4. Hold yourself accountable.

When it comes to corporate sustainability goals, measuring and quantifying results is vital to holding businesses accountable to reaching them.

Take a look at our Life Cycle Assessment to learn more about how this is measured — and how the right recycled food grade fiber can help your company reduce your environmental footprint and provide sustainable paper packaging for consumers who care about our planet.

SOURCE: Sustana Fiber