Top 3 Tips: Eco-friendly Ways to Package a Parcel

Whilst there isn’t much you can do about the carbon footprint of the shipping industry, there are things that you can to do make your parcel more eco-friendly when sending it via a courier.

In this blog we share our top 3 tips on what you can do to help the environment when it comes to packaging your parcel:

Which Packaging Materials to Avoid

Whilst there are several things we can each do to help the environment – there are many more things that we should try ‘not to do’ that will really help make a difference! Avoiding the use of the following packaging materials will definitely be a good start:

  • Bubble Wrap

  • Packaging Tape

  • Polystyrene Foam Chips

  • Plastic Bags

So the first thing to do is to try and substitute the above items for biodegradable packaging materials wherever possible.

Biodegradable Packaging Materials

So what packaging materials should you use to ensure your goods are protected inside the box without harming the environment?

Instead of Bubble Wrap use Crumpled Paper

Crumpled paper is light weight, flexible and protective. It protects your goods by creating protective air pockets that work as shock absorbers, protecting your goods from minor bumps and impacts during transit. Crumpled paper works best when combined with other packing materials, and should always be wrapped around goods (and also placed inside wherever possible) as well as used to fill any void space and to cushion your goods inside the box.

Instead of Normal Packaging Tape use Eco-Friendly Packaging Tape

Yup…. it does exist! Simply type the words ‘eco-friendly packaging tape’ into Google, and you will be presented with several products that offer you an environmentally friendly option. Look for products that are 100% recyclable, paper based and silicon free to really make a difference! Although the eco-friendly packaging tapes are slightly dearer than normal tape, it’s not by much, so it’s well worth switching!

Instead of Polystyrene Chips use Mushrooms

No, we’re not suggesting that you go buy some mushrooms and pour them into your parcel instead of Styrofoam chips. That would only create a big mess. Instead we are suggesting you check out the new packaging material made from mushrooms! It’s simply called ‘Mushroom Packaging’ and whilst it’s not cheaper than Styrofoam chips, it is more or less the same price, or perhaps marginally more expensive depending on how much you need, but its 100% biodegradable and non-toxic to humans. Perfect for keeping your goods snug in their box, and the environment safe!

Instead of Plastic Bags use Canvas Bags

If you are looking to replace the use of plastic bags as packaging material, then there are two options available to you:

  • Use a canvas bag

  • Use a dissolvable plastic bag

Canvas bags are a great environmentally friendly alternative to plastic bags, and you can even get waterproof ones too (made waterproof using wax)!

Dissolvable plastic bags are a new product and if you need to use a clear flexible material to wrap your goods in then why not give these biodegradable plastic bags a try? Simply look for ‘harmless-dissolve bags’ online and choose the size you need. These bags dissolve in water and are completely biodegradable, but they are no good for keeping water away from your goods!

Keep it Light & Pack it Tight

Last but not least, always remember that the heavier or bulkier your packaging is, the heavier or bulkier your parcel will be, and the more fuel it will take to deliver it. So try and keep it as light as possible and remember to pack it tight.

A golden rule of thumb is to always use two inches of cushioning material inside the box to keep it protected in transit, and avoid stuffing it with excessive packaging materials.

So there you have it, a range of ways you can package your parcel by save money on wrapping as well as being kind to the environment so that next time you organise a parcel to be sent by courier service, your parcel will arrive safe and well.

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