The Supply Chain Goes Green

Businesses are looking for ways to reduce their impact on the environment. Learn ways your business can go green with changes to packaging and supply chains.

Businesses are increasingly looking at ways to reduce their impact on the environment, and that includes packaging and supply chains. Gary Schmidt, senior category manager, and Jake Swenson, director of sustainability, both at Staples, share five notable trends:

1. Moving to more curbside recyclable products.

Instead of mailing packages in a bubble mailer, which can’t be put in the recycling bin, companies are turning to materials that can break down in the recycling stream, like hexagon paper or starch-based padding.

2. Using recycled materials in packaging and products.

This helps cuts down on plastic use, strengthens recycling markets and reduces emissions. 

3. Shifting from boxes to mailers.

When appropriate, shipping products in smaller, lighter packaging helps reduce the carbon footprint.

4. Using right-sized packaging.

Tailoring shipping boxes to the contents, so products can be sent in the smallest package possible, saves shipping costs and lessens the environmental impact.

5. Committing to reduce carbon emissions.

​​Over 1,000 companies globally have pledged to establish emission-reduction targets aligned with the 2015 Paris climate accord. This includes logistics companies committing to transform their fleets to electric vehicles in the next decade.

Images by Staples, Jennifer J Taylor/iStock