After searching long and hard to find ways to create less waste in its own deliveries, online eco-friendly retailer My Little Panda, has hit on a solution to packaging waste, based on Japanese origami principles. We’re all familiar with the experience of unboxing online orders packed with plastic, polystyrene and other protective materials to get to a branded cardboard box which may, in turn, contain its own plastic packaging. It costs more, takes up huge volumes of space in delivery vehicles and has to be recycled, itself a costly process, not to mention a hassle, says the firm’s co-founder Paris Michailidis. “Many of us find that our recycling boxes are full to bursting with cardboard and that our bin is overflowing with difficult to recycle plastic wrapping.”
“The end of double packaging is here.”
After extensive testing, the company has hit on the solution – wrapping paper made of fast-growing and sustainable bamboo. “We manage to cut down on packaging and plastic wrap by 90% when posting a product. We are the first company in the UK to try it,” says Michailidis. “The end of double packaging is here.” Of course, it cannot work for all products, such as extremely fragile items but on items that it can the reduced packing, in turn, saves 80% of the space that boxed items occupy, enabling more deliveries per van and lowering congestion and emissions.
The big picture
It’s a quietly elegant solution to a growing problem. The UK is drowning in cardboard waste. UK online sales grew 74% year-on-year in January 2021 and with this growth comes a huge rise in wasteful cardboard packing. “Even recyclable cardboard still creates problems,” says Paris. “When a tree is cut down, it takes 30 years for a new one to grow. With the world facing one of its biggest-ever environmental crises, we really don’t have time for that.”
The gift that keeps on giving
Not only is the packing suitable for fragile goods, it also serves as elegant wrapping paper with a double-sided label that has space for a message, removing the need to gift wrap, saving more money, time and waste. This new type of packaging saves lots of time and means that you can be sure any product that you purchase from us will be beautifully wrapped in sustainable materials and will be a gift that you will be genuinely proud to hand over.
More info: https://mylittlepanda.co.uk/pages/packaging