The single-use disposables are short lived and might remain in the system for thousands of year. And it's growing. And learn more about Over Packaging.

July 10, 2019

Over Packaging & Single Use Plastics

Updated On: Aug. 17, 2019

Why are Single Use Disposables the Problem?

The single-use disposables are short lived and might remain in the system for thousands of year. And it's growing.

The big question is? Do we need single-use disposables for the convenience of a few minutes and we're willing to bring such disposables in our system which will remain for many years to come.

The plastic waste which constitutes the significant chunk of the single-use disposables doesn't decompose. It'll break down into smaller particles and pollute soil or oceans. And all this for the convenience of a few minutes.


What is Over Packaging & Why is it the Problem?

The over packaging means giving more disposables even if the customer doesn't need it. Many companies unintentionally start doing over the Packaging to make the distribution and deliveries smooth. Let's say the restaurant sells a small portion of salad and desserts separately, which are already packed inside the box or the container. And when someone orders the meal, they give the salad container and the dessert box along with the meal box. The customer ends up getting three separate boxes or containers which could have been packed inside one meal tray. It is the classic example of Over Packaging

Over Packaging creates extra food packaging waste in the system for no reason. And it's everywhere Potatoes chips in the large plastic bag, Bigger sized delivery boxes for the smaller items, too many extra ketchup pouches with the meal.

Why do we need to stop Over Packaging?

The over packaging is the Problem generated by not properly thinking the right Packaging for the product to be packed. The Problem generally originates because of a few flaws in the company procurement department influenced by carelessness and greed.

The online delivery companies generally keep multiple sized packing boxes in stock. But sometimes the customer gets the oversized shipping box for the order. Why is that? It might be possible the warehouse might have run out of the right size packing box for the day, and to deliver fast, they would have packed the small-sized item inside the much bigger box. The will be the case until the warehouse receives the delivery of right-sized packing boxes. The Problem can be solved by ordering boxes before you ran out of the stock. Storing the extra packing boxes takes descent space which could be used to store more products because of which the companies switch to using oversized boxes instead of keeping additional stock of the right sized boxes.

What's the Solution to the Single Use Plastics?

Many of the businesses assume their customer wants the additional items packed inside the single-use plastic along with their order and hands it over to them. A classic example is the fast food delivery joints which will give you 3-4 ketchup pouches along with the order. The solution to eliminating this thrash is to serve condiments in bulk. One counter can have the ketchup dispenser with zip lock pouches on the size.

Absolutely stop giving extra disposables until the customer asks for it. The sandwich or burger should be wrapped inside the butter paper and can be handed over to the customer. Give the paper bag if the customer asks for it. And keep one section from where the customer can pick up Tissue paper, sauce.

Start using the reusable cups and boxes instead of the single-use disposables. Let's say you bring the reusable cup for the tea and coffee to the office. This will be 365 cups, not going to the ocean or the landfill. In an office with 1000 employees, a good policy can save 3,65,000 paper cups in a year. That's a good start. Try to reuse as much you can. Bring your reusable box for lunch, a cloth bag for groceries.

All online food delivery companies should ask if the customer needs the cutlery, tissue paper along with the meal. The customer might be at home and might not want the disposable cutlery while the customers at the office can opt for the cutlery.