Sustainable packaging has grown in prominence and focus over the last few years. Many brand owners have made recent commitments to improving the “sustainability” of their packaging- whether circularity, impact, sourcing, or any other definition- that should take effect over the coming years. Consumers are becoming more interested in the source of their products and packaging, and putting equal weight on the eventual fate of those items and their waste once their useful life has ended.
Some brands have been later to this party, while others, like Starbucks, have been here since before it kicked off. As societal mindsets continue to evolve, so too has Starbucks’ drive to improve their environmental impact. Their most recent sustainability commitment was released last week, and can be found below. I’ve called out a couple of elements below that I think nicely align with some of the ongoing innovation efforts in BASF Dispersions and Resins' printing and packaging business:
1. We will expand plant-based options, migrating toward a more environmentally friendly menu
2. We will shift from single-use to reusable packaging
3. We will invest in innovative and regenerative agricultural practices, reforestation, forest conservation and water replenishment in our supply chain
4. We will invest in better ways to manage our waste, both in our stores and in our communities, to ensure more reuse, recycling and elimination of food waste
5. We will innovate to develop more eco-friendly stores, operations, manufacturing and delivery
Starbucks preliminary targets:
1. 50% reduction in carbon emissions in our direct operations and supply chain
2. 50% of our water withdrawal for direct operations and coffee production will be conserved or replenished with a focus on communities and basins with high water risk
3. 50% reduction in waste sent to landfill from stores and manufacturing, driven by a broader shift toward a circular economy. To underscore this commitment, we are pleased to join Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s New Plastics Economy Global Commitment, setting ambitious circular targets for our packaging.
We have a broad portfolio of current and future products that support brand owners, including Starbucks and others, to realize these sustainability commitments. Our portfolio of JONCRYL resins and dispersions enable the formulation of water-based inks on paper and film that provide vibrancy and resistance, and with much better handling requirements than their solvent ink equivalents. As government regulations tighten on the use of fluorochemicals as barrier coatings in food packaging, we have developed a water-based grease barrier solution, JONCRYL HPB 1702 that provides effective grease resistance on paper and board, even when creased or folded. Furthermore, and most relevant to our friends at Starbucks, we’re working towards the replacement of polyethylene on paper cups- which currently renders those cups unrecyclable- with the JONCRYL HPB 4000-Series of water-based coatings that enable the production of newly-recyclable hot and cold cups. Finally, our EPOTAL 3702 and 430 compostable laminating adhesives give the consumer better piece of mind by enabling film and paper packaging to enjoy a better end of life.
Sustainability takes commitment and it takes collaboration. As we move forward with our current and future offerings, we’ll continue to partner along the value chain to enable everyone to deliver on their lofty sustainable packaging targets.
Have a great weekend,
Read the message from Starbucks ceo Kevin Johnson: Starbucks new sustainability commitment