Share

Proudly communicate your experience of the entire process, from initial design of the packaging item to consideration of its end-of-life.

Strategy 4: Communicate the approach

Environmental communication is an integral part of an optimization initiative. It requires close cooperation and much discussion by a whole range of stakeholders throughout the process, from concept to the end of a packaging item's useful life.

Implementing an ecodesign initiative demonstrates your company's willingness to improve packaging and concern for the environment. As the initiative is usually well-received when efficiently communicated, this section presents suggestions on how to reach your target audiences.

OptimEco.ca offers an excellent communications tool, OptimAction, that is both innovative and interactive to provide information on your packaging optimization initiative.

With OptimAction, the user can document initiatives and detail benefits achieved using qualitative and quantitative indicators, including greenhouse gas emissions reductions, lowered packaging weight, improved packaging/product ratio, etc.

View the Share Your Optimization Approach section

Action 9: Disseminate information internally

Action 10: Discuss options with suppliers

Action 11: Communicate with consumers

Action 9: Disseminate information internally

Packaging design decisions require input from a multidisciplinary team. Clearly defined roles and responsibilities according to expertise will set the stage for fluid communications and coordination.

R&D specialists, buyers, marketing experts, representatives from sustainable development, production and logistics departments and other teams can all play an important role in developing and carrying out optimization initiatives.

Messages can be communicated internally via such traditional tools as your intranet, internal memos, employee meetings, etc.

See the OptimEco Kit for points the manager should consider.

Action 10: Discuss options with suppliers

Implementing a packaging optimization initiative can generate significant changes for suppliers, who will be required to meet new environmental requirements in terms of materials selection, recycled content, revisiting the initial packaging concept or the entire packaging system. A period of transition will be necessary to enable suppliers to adapt to the new situation.

The key to successful supplier communications is the development of detailed specifications for responsible procurement. Discussion meetings and supplier training can also facilitate the process.

View Strategy 1 for more information on responsible procurement.

Action 11: Communicate with consumers

Providing consumers with information on packaging optimization initiatives is an effective way to convey your commitment to the environmental performance of your packaged products or printed matter.

You can highlight the steps you took, any benefits derived and the optimization challenges you overcame, while keeping in mind that all products and packaging generate environmental impacts. There is no perfect product or packaging.

Points to consider

  • Develop a coherent, accurate, factual and verifiable message. Consumers must be able to grasp the essence of the environmental benefits resulting from the initiative.
  • Focus the message on the nature of the materials that make up a packaging item so as to facilitate recovery by consumers and increase recyclability.
  • Add information or symbols on packaging to provide consumers with information on how to better sort packaging (sorting instructions).
  • Aim your message directly to consumers by giving clear and specific tips on how to help in the packaging recovery process.

Avoid

  • Making unfounded statements.
  • Touting that the initiative is more eco-responsible than it actually is.



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