Aluminum. Cardboard. Glass.
These are three materials often used to hold liquid. A beer bottle, a drink at a fast food drive through, a glass fizzy drink. Unfortunately, these materials, while equipped for ease of use, struggle with the volume of a drink. In as much, they are difficult when it comes to saving space–for the environment.
Then there’s plastic. Often considered a last resort for drink and food packaging, plastic containers have the effect of improving the environmental impact through a decrease in waste. Some statistics bear this out.
Packing experts estimate that each pound of plastic packaging can reduce food waste by up to 1.7 pounds.
Just two pounds of plastic can deliver 1,300 ounces–roughly 10 gallons–of a beverage such as juice, soda or water. You’d need three pounds of aluminum to bring home the same amount of product, eight pounds of steel, or over 40 pounds of glass.
Since 1977, the two liter plastic soft drink bottle has gone from weighing 68 grams to just 47 grams today, representing a 21 gram reduction per bottle. That saved more than 180 million pounds of packaging in 2006 for just two liter soft drink bottles.
The ecological friendliness of plastic, for the environment and also for American society, is not well-known. But fortunately, more and more people are becoming aware of the social impact companies make, as well as the environmental impact companies have with their products.
There are coffee shops that advertise “fair trade” coffee. There is organically grown food, bed sheets, clothes. Companies send positive messages oftentimes through advertising.
Social media can be a powerful choice for those companies willing to send a more altruistic and friendly advertising campaign. Plastic and other recycling choices may not seem like an especially attractive option, as it is less viscerally appealing than a choice to pay workers in a developing nation money to live off of.
But the value of plastic in the nation’s consciousness is a possibility in the minds of companies and their executives. For instance, 52% of people around the world makes purchasing decisions partially due to packaging that promotes a social or environmental impact positively.
There are avenues for companies looking to further this along. Relying on a packaging distributor that is environmentally conscious and will package products in a way that promotes positive environmental images is a possibility.
A packaging distributor has the option of using a packaging machine to provide strong containers for food and liquid, while providing a strong seal. This is especially important as one out of six Americans get sick from food borne diseases. That’s 48 million people annually. 128,000 are hospitalized and 3,000 die.
Packaging machines will sometimes use pre made pouch filling machines or even x-ray machines for food inspection. This prevents the possibility of contaminants staying within the product, while being passed for consumption in the store. Food hygiene is important.
Vacuum sealers allow food to be stored 3-5 times longer than food stored in plastic bags and containers. And a typical metal detector application with a wet or conductive product where 2.5-3.5 millimeters of stainless steel can be detected, X-ray frequently detect 1.5 millimeters or less. This improves food safety and brand protection.
Americans want safe food products and environmentally friendly companies. Plastic and a consistent packaging distributor help achieve those goals.
Aluminum. Cardboard. Glass.