At the end of each year, people tend to do an annual assessment. How was this last year for me? What are my resolutions for next year? This is similar to a life cycle assessment, or LCA. An LCA identifies opportunities for improvement in packaging by quantifying the impacts that a product has on the environment throughout its full life cycle. This ranges from production and manufacturing to the disposal phase. Also known as a “Cradle to Grave” sustainability assessment, LCAs ensure that as we become more environmentally conscious that our packaging practices stay green. Learn some of the win-wins of LCAs below:
Why Perform LCAs
LCAs carefully monitor each step of a product or package’s life, from the raw materials used in production to what happens after the product is discarded and chucked into the trash. By leveraging LCAs, companies gain a stronger understanding of exactly how beneficial each process is to the environment, while capturing the cost savings of greener efforts. With this information, businesses can also back up any environmental claims as more than simply marketing strategies, and consumers can better understand the environmental impact of their purchases.
By using LCAs in development, companies can examine the materials used in their packaging strategy. This helps them determine whether or not a safer, more cost-effective alternative is necessary. Rather than find a better solution for recycling plastic containers, making changes at the source of the package’s life cycle by switching to recycled paperboard can have a positive impact on all other processes throughout the cycle, from design to disposal. Examining the production and manufacturing stage quantifies how much fuel and energy is used to create the package, so that the appropriate solutions can be implemented to reduce emissions. This leads to a final product that is safe at all stages of its life for true sustainability.
As you do your personal assessments at the close of 2017, make sure that you throw in an LCA for your packaging. It will make 2018 more efficient and greener!
To learn more, don’t hesitate to contact us.