Eco-Friendly Protective Packaging Options
After you’ve put care into every aspect of your product, you’ll want to ensure your packages arrive safely, and with a great unboxing experience. Thankfully, the world of protective packaging is no longer limited to virgin bubble wrap® and plastic air pillows.
Here, we describe eco-friendly void fill and cushioning options that support four different protecting functions:
- Individual product protection: Wrapping each product with cushioning for protection against the impact of a package being dropped and from colliding with other products in a box. Items like glassware, bottles, candles and pottery need this type of protective packaging.
- Void Fill: Most large companies ship orders that vary drastically in product set and quantity. These companies can’t make a unique box for each shipment, and need to streamlined the shipping boxes they carry into a manageable set of dimensions that can accommodate the diversity in their orders. These boxes end up with some empty space, which needs to be filled with cushioning for blocking and bracing, so items don’t move and damage themselves or each other in transit.
- Cushioning, Edge Crush Protection: Some items, such as books, are not fragile or awkwardly shaped (and can actually be shipped in a perfectly sized box). However, these items often require edge crush protection to ensure that impact to the package does not result in the crushing of corners and sides.
- Scuff and Dust Protection: Finally, some items or situations (for example a dress shirt shipped in a corrugated box) call for basic dust and scuff protection.
Individual product protection
What it is: Die cut honeycomb paper that ships flat and is expanded through a dispenser that creates cushioning that can be molded around your products for protection and beautiful presentation. Curbside recyclable and naturally biodegradable.
Great for: Glass bottles, pottery, art pieces, candles, glassware, books that may be subject to edge crush concerns, and more. GreenWrap work really well for companies who sell a variety of fragile goods, all of which are differently sized, that need individual wrapping and protection.
Did You Know? If your company goes through 20 or more cases of GreenWrap each year, consider going with a manual, refillable dispenser instead. Click here to learn more.
Flexi-Hex Air Sleeve
Individual product protection
What it is: Lightweight honeycomb sleeve that ships flat, and then easily expands to be wrapped around fragile items such as glassware, beauty products, and more. Made with at least 76% recycled content, curbside recyclable and naturally biodegradable.
Great for: Glass bottles, candles, glassware, dishware, and more. Flexi-Hex is a great solution for companies that sell consistently sized items that each need individual wrapping and protection. Flexi-Hex is more operationally efficient than GreenWrap; however, the existing sizes must work for your business. Additionally, it does not provide top and bottom product protection, so consider adding one of the below cushioning or void fill options.
Void Fill (Bracing, Blocking)
What it is: Packaging paper arrives in rolls (24” in length and 9” diameter rolls). Just tear off the length you need, scrunch it up, and use it to fill empty spaces in your shipping boxes. This type of void fill provides blocking and bracing support within a box, preventing your products from moving side to side or up and down. Our packaging paper is 100% recycled, curbside recyclable and naturally biodegradable. Some companies also use packaging paper to wrap products, providing light denting and scuffing protection.
Great for: Any company that ships in boxes that have excess space. Even the best fitted box will often have empty space to fill, based on how your products are shaped and how many products are being sent in an individual box. Packaging paper also allows one company that sells a variety of SKUs to comfortably and sustainably ship using a streamlined set of shipping box sizes.
Individual Product Protection, Void Fill, Cushioning
What it is: Shredded corrugated sheets (available in 1/4", 1/2" and 3/4" thicknesses) that can be laid down on the bottom or top of a shipping box for cushioning, or can be scrunched up to be used as void fill within shipping boxes. 100% recycled, curbside recyclable and naturally biodegradable.
Great for: Companies that ship fragile items or items that may be subject to edge crush and need to lay down a cushioning nest at the bottom, top or sides of their shipping boxes. Corrugated bubble can also be used to fill small amounts of empty space in boxes. Finally, corrugated bubble can also be wrapped around individual products to prevent them from damaging each other in transit. Note that this product may bring a small amount of corrugated dust with it.
What it is: Shredded indented Kraft packaging paper that can be scrunched up and laid into a shipping box to provide basic cushioning. 100% recycled, curbside recyclable and naturally biodegradable.
Great for: Companies that ship a variety of items in small boxes and need to lay down a cushioning and decorative nest at the bottom. While ornament shred does not provide as much cushioning and protection as corrugated bubble, it is more decorative and aesthetically pleasing. Because of this, ornament shred is typically paired with presentation style boxes, such as Literature Mailers and Tab Locking boxes.
What it is: Thin, lightly calendared paper that can be used to wrap individual items to protect them from smudges or dust while also creating a beautiful presentation. 100% recycled, either curbside recyclable or compostable (depending on the municipality), and naturally biodegradable.
Great for: Wrapping books, frames, apparel, soap, jewelry, accessories, and more. We recommend tissue paper for products that don’t need damage or edge crush protection, but that you want to protect from dust and want to present beautifully.