Counting Down the Top 10 articles of 2020 - #9: Alternatives to Plastic Packaging Not Always More Sustainable

Based on online clicks and unique page views, we are counting down the Top 10 articles of 2020. Join us as we look back at the best of 2020. Anne Marie Mohan's report entitled Alternatives to Plastic Packaging Not Always More Sustainable, landed at #9.

Survey interviewees expressed a sense of caution around in-store refill models, such as this one at U.K.’s Waitrose supermarket, due to issues such as product shelf life.
Survey interviewees expressed a sense of caution around in-store refill models, such as this one at U.K.’s Waitrose supermarket, due to issues such as product shelf life.

Anne Marie Mohan reported in January 2020 that by bowing to consumer pressure to eliminate single-use plastic packaging, CPGs and retailers switch to alternative materials. And that sometimes creates an even greater environmental burden in the process.

A fascinating new report from independent U.K. think tank Green Alliance finds that, despite retailer and Consumer Packaged Goods companies’ promises around reducing or eliminating plastic packaging, some dynamics are immutable. Among them, sustainability is a complex supply chain issue that requires complex solutions; there is no silver bullet—the sustainability of a packaging material is dependent on the application; consumer surveys rarely reflect consumer realities; and quick fixes can often result in unintended consequences.

The report, “Plastic Promises, What the grocery sector is really doing about packaging," provides the results of interviews with five of U.K.’s major supermarkets as well as with major CPG companies. The aim, says Green Alliance...

Continue to the full article here

More in Sustainability