Reusable & refillable packaging on the rise

Reusable & refillable packaging on the rise

Thomas Reiner | 24.06.2020

The German cosmetics company “Rituals” has been developing refill packaging for its products. The packaging relaunch for body creams, skin care products, incense sticks, hand soaps and car perfumes has already been implemented. Further products are to follow. The refill packs already account for around 25 percent of sales in the most important product categories.

Refill and reusable packaging isn’t only very popular with Rituals. They are generally on the rise and promise significant sustainability benefits. According to a study by the LCA Centre, buying refillable packaging can reduce CO2 emissions by up to 70 percent, energy consumption by up to 65 percent and water consumption by up to 45 percent.

Rituals’ well-founded eco-balance-sheet approach to choosing the optimum packaging material is exemplary. The company has 100 per cent of its packages tested by independent experts according to the LCA (Life Cycle Analysis) method. This enables it to determine the environmental compatibility of the materials, rationally weigh up possible alternatives and make an informed decision.

To achieve the sustainability benefits of environmentally friendly refill packs, however, new challenges in pack design must also be mastered. This is because the new or modified materials with their specific properties lead to restrictions in design. An exciting task that can only be solved by a team of engineers and designers.

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Covid-19 accelerates the circular economy, a key element of EU recovery

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Covid-19 accelerates the circular economy, a key element of EU recovery

Thomas Reiner | 18.06.2020

At the end of May 2020, the European Commission presented its proposal for a comprehensive reconstruction plan. 750 billion will be mobilised for the “Next Generation EU” action. In addition, the long-term EU budget 2021-2027 will be increased to a total of EUR 1.85 trillion.

The funds made available for “Next Generation EU” are also flowing into the European “Green Deal”, which aims, among other things, to strengthen the circular economy – with positive consequences for the economy and ecology. Under the measure, the circular economy will become a central element of the reconstruction of the EU.

Economy: The intensified expansion of the recycling industry is expected to create up to 1 million new jobs. According to calculations by McKinsey and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, up to 1.8 trillion euros in new economy-wide opportunities can be tapped by 2030 through the expansion of the circular economy in Europe.

Ecology: In addition to the economic benefits, the package also brings ecological progress. These include, for example, reduced CO2 emissions and a lowering of the undesirable entries of used packaging into the environment (littering). Worldwide, a consistently developed circular economy could reduce carbon dioxide emissions by around 3.6 billion tons per year.

Currently, large parts of society and industry are mainly concerned with Covid-19 and the Corona pandemic. At the same time, however, the issue of the circular economy is gathering momentum – and will emerge from the crisis stronger than before.

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Our survey shows: Corona is driving digital transformation in the packaging industry

Our survey shows: Corona is driving digital transformation in the packaging industry

Thomas Reiner | 12.06.2020

Our survey shows: Corona is driving digital transformation in the packaging industry
Berndt+Partner regularly conducts expert interviews with decision-makers from companies in the packaging industry. Our most recent survey of 40 decision-makers on the subject of digital transformation produced exciting results and shows clear trends.

Across the board, a strong push for digital transformation can be observed. At the same time, it is clear that this drive was born out of necessity. The current corona crisis forces us to act. New ways had to be found, decisions and investments had to be accelerated.

Three important trends are emerging:

Internal communication
The driving force behind this trend is the increased work from home that has become necessary due to the Corona pandemic. As a consequence, this leads to the introduction of digital communication tools and infrastructure, which is used for internal exchange and internal communication.

Market Communication
External communication via digital channels is also increasing. Meetings, projects, trade fairs, exhibitions and price negotiations are increasingly conducted via Internet-based services.

Services and products
The acceptance of digital product acceptance is increasing, especially in the field of mechanical engineering. At the same time, digital services are being promoted, for example in the area of maintenance.

Which also shows: Especially in a time when a crisis situation forces us to make quick decisions, those who can make quick decisions and accept the corresponding risks benefit. Those who make business decisions quickly despite the risks will benefit in the long term and be successful.

Our survey of experts also clearly shows that there is a significant overall change in awareness towards digital transformation. A change that will have consequences. This new awareness will further strengthen the ongoing digital transformation process and lead to ongoing investments in IT, more service and process innovations and, last but not least, the launch of digital projects that are looking for new business models, for example.

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Corona is driving consumer awareness towards more sustainability

Corona is driving consumer awareness towards more sustainability

Thomas Reiner | 05.06.2020

Anyone who thought that with the Corona pandemic the issues of sustainability and littering would disappear from the agenda has to rethink. What we predicted earlier this year is confirmed in a recent study by Accenture: The corona crisis is becoming a driver of sustainability awareness among consumers.

In the study, Accenture surveyed more than 3,000 consumers in 15 countries between April 2 and 6. The study focused on how the corona crisis is changing the priorities, purchasing decisions and behavioral patterns of global consumers.

The result: Covid-19 will permanently change consumer behavior. 54% of consumers stated that they are making more sustainable choices when shopping and want to continue to do so.

The issues of sustainability and littering will not disappear against this background. On the contrary, they will be even more important after the crisis than before.

As a result, stakeholders will have to devote more attention to the issue of sustainability. And they must take a holistic approach to it. Closing the cycles, especially for plastics, is right at the top of the agenda. Much has already been set in motion here, but not everyone is pulling their weight yet.

It is also important to remember that closing the cycles is indispensable, but not a panacea. We can only be truly successful if we take a holistic approach to sustainability and take into account the many often heterogeneous requirements on an ecological, economic and social level.

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Less e-commerce than expected during corona-crisis, despite high demand

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Less e-commerce than expected during corona-crisis, despite high demand

Thomas Reiner | 27.05.2020

It may seem surprising that the number of online purchases is below expectations. Especially in times of Corona, one would have expected a dynamic increase. And there is one, for example in the number of online first-time buyers.

As the INNOFACT Corona Trade Tracking from the 16th calendar week in April 2020 shows, first-time buyers make up a not inconsiderable proportion of all online buyers, especially in the DIY, beverage, food and drugstore product segments.

If the overall figures for e-commerce are nevertheless below expectations, this is due to a performance problem in the system.
Reasons for not buying despite buying interest are cited by respondents to the retail tracking survey, for example:

– Too long delivery times (30 %)
– concerns about delivery costs (27 %)
– Lack of availability of the desired products (18 %)

There is a high level of willingness to engage in e-commerce among consumers. But the system was not prepared. Where goods are not available or delivery is delayed, the desire to buy cannot become reality.

We can assume that the chain is doing its homework. They will be better prepared for dynamically increasing consumer interest in the future. E-commerce will emerge stronger from the Corona crisis.

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