Sustainable Packaging for Storage and Moving

By Anna Roberts

Published 9 months ago

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As we become more environmentally conscious, individuals and companies are looking out for more sustainable alternatives to traditional methods of packaging, storage and moving materials as a way to reduce waste, help protect the planet, and be more cost-effective.

With so many options available, here are our top five sustainable options that you need to know about, whether you are a business owner looking to reduce your carbon footprint, a storage operator looking to offer options to customers, or an individual preparing to move house or into storage.

Recyclable paper-based packaging

Recyclable paper-based packaging is a go-to option for both companies and individuals due to the nature that it can be custom and tailored to your requirements. Corrugated boxes provide strength and protection, whilst paper-based sleeves can help to protect and separate individual items.

It is one of the most widely used options due to being readily available, but not all paper-based packaging is equal and made from 100% recycled materials so finding companies that are FSC certified is the way to ensure that they are sourced responsibly.

cardboard box full with items

Biodegradable packing peanuts made from cornstarch

Packing peanuts are traditionally made from polystyrene foam and are known to take hundreds of years to decompose, releasing harmful chemicals into surrounding soil and water. However, developments in the field of corn starch-based products have meant that these break down easily into soil, releasing no toxins, whilst being light, effective and the same level of protection as traditional packing peanuts - just without the environmental damage!

Reusable moving boxes made from recycled plastic

Cardboard boxes are out; reusable plastic boxes are in! Not only are they sturdier, stackable, and easy to clean, but they can be used over and over again, for moving and for storage. They are more cost-effective due to the fact that they can be used multiple times, they will last much longer, reducing the cost-per-use and can last for years. They are more expensive than traditional cardboard boxes that are used for moving, and less readily available, but they are worth the investment.

Compostable bubble wrap made from plant-based materials

Traditional bubble wrap is extremely popular for protecting fragile items - and who can resist popping it when it’s been moved? Naturally, that increases waste as it is normally already made from plastic that is not biodegradable or recyclable, therefore contributing to landfill and plastic pollution. Why not invest in compostable bubble wrap?

That way you get all of the benefits of protecting delicate items, and still get that feel-good feeling of popping the bubbles, but is much more sustainable and reduces environmental impact.

Two people packing a box surrounded by boxes

Renewable packing tape made from plant-based materials

Whether no matter using cardboard boxes, plastic or bubble wrap, tape always comes in handy to secure items and ensure that nothing becomes loose during the moving process. Traditional tape is made from plastic, however, renewable packing tape is a much more eco-friendly alternative. Being made from cornstarch or bamboo, making them biodegradable and compostable, whilst staying just as strong and durable as traditional tape.

Type of Material Main use Sustainability Durability Cost
Recyclable paper-based packaging Shipping small, lightweight items High Low Low
Biodegradable packing peanuts made from cornstarch Shipping fragile items High Low Low
Reusable moving boxes made from recycled plastic Moving household goods locally High High Medium
Compostable bubblewrap made from plant-based materials Shipping delicate items High Low Medium
Renewable packing tape made from plant-based materials Shipping delicate items High Medium Low
two people using bubblewrap

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