We blame corporations for a lot- and for good reason: they are responsible for large percentages of the pollution, emission-heavy production, poor worker conditions and consumption-driven mindsets that plague our planet and society. However, it is said, "to whoever much is given, of him [or her] will much be required." Though the big-box names have huge potential for leaving destruction in their wake, they also have the clout to power big changes. Recently, several mainstream companies have started making strides toward this change in the form of sustainable packaging. Here are some to look out for...
The "PlantBottle™" from Coca Cola
Of course, it is a no-brainer that the most sustainable option for H20 on-the-go is to bottle and carry tap water in your own reusable, BPA-free bottle. But for the millions who haven't yet seen the logic behind this, creating excessive plastic waste by drinking bottled water is still a problem. According to a Packaging Digest article release earlier this month, the Coca Cola Company's recently unveiled PlantBottle™ is a fully recyclable bottle that has a lower reliance on a non-renewable resource, and reduces carbon emissions, compared with petroleum-based PET plastic bottles. Of course, as the below quote reveals, the percentages make this announcement more underwhelming than it first appears; as these bottles are STILL made of PET, it's just been tweaked.
The “PlantBottle™” is currently made through an innovative process that turns sugar cane and molasses, a by-product of sugar production, into a key component for PET plastic. Coca-Cola is also exploring the use of other plant materials for future generations of the “PlantBottle™.”
Way to go Coke...now if only you would use that same sugar cane in your beverages instead of high-fructose corn syrup...
Biodegradable Bag from SunChips
And by SunChips I mean Frito-Lay...and by Frito-Lay I mean PepsiCo. (whew!). Just in time for Earth Day this year, SunChips rolled out a new bag for it's crunchy-product that's made from 33 percent plant-based renewable materials, with plans to introduce a completely an entirely degradable bag for its SunChips brand by Earth Day 2010. According to an April article in the Modesto Bee, moving to compostable bags isn't the only effort Frito-Lay is making to close the loop on waste generated at the Modesto, CA plant. "It [Frito-Lay] also delivers organic waste from its chips to an animal feed supply company" and, appropriately, powers its plant with football field-sized solar panels.
Know of another conventional product/brand that is changing its packaging to be more appealing to green consumers? Share it here in a comment!