With the advancement in technology, we have moved towards industry 4.0-led industrial manufacturing and production. While the use of technologies such as additive manufacturing simulation and robotic manufacturing has resulted in increased production, not enough has been done to ensure that we do not harm the environment more than we already have. Take post-production industrial packaging for example. We are still using non-recycled plastic tapes for packaging. It’s a no-brainer that plastic self-adhesive tapes are not eco-friendly and when you scale the tape use on a global scale, you can see how harmful it is. And that is why various US states such as California, Oregon, Maine, and Colorado have passed EPR (Extended Producer Responsibility) bills.
Moreover, sustainable choices by retailers and producers in product packaging, is also seen as a selling point now as it attracts more climate conscious consumers. Many people specifically don’t shop at businesses which they know aren’t doing enough to help the environment.
In India EPR guidelines (2022) cover reuse, recycling, use of recycled plastic content, and end-of-life disposal when it comes to plastic packaging. The guidelines also require the Producer, Importer, brand owner, and plastic waste processor to register on a centralized portal developed by the Central Pollution Control Board.
It means that the use of single-use plastic tapes is heavily discouraged to reduce the single-use plastic in the environment and that is why eco-friendly self-adhesive tapes known as gummed paper tapes or WATs are required and necessary to be in use, replacing plastic self-adhesive tapes in commercial packaging. Suppliers are encouraged to use more eco-friendly packing tapes and minimize the uses of plastic self-adhesive tapes.
Eco-friendly Tapes- Moving Towards Sustainable Packaging
In recent years, the global community has witnessed a growing concern for environmental sustainability. As a result, industries across various sectors are actively seeking eco-friendly alternatives to reduce their carbon footprint. One such area of focus is sustainable packaging, where the use of eco-friendly packing tapes or gummed paper tapes is gaining significant attention.
The Need for Sustainable Packaging
1. The rise in e-commerce and global trade has led to an increase in packaging waste.
2. Traditional packaging materials, such as plastic tapes, contribute to environmental degradation.
3. Sustainable packaging aims to minimize waste, reduce carbon emissions, and preserve natural resources.
So, What are Eco-Friendly Tapes?
Eco-friendly tapes are adhesive materials used for sealing and securing packages but designed to be environmentally friendly, biodegradable, and recyclable.
Such tapes serve as an alternative to conventional plastic tapes, which are non-biodegradable and often end up in landfills or oceans as single use plastic.
Why Eco-Friendly Tapes are really Eco-friendly?
An eco-friendly tape is made of materials that are bio-degradable unlike single use plastic or other plastic. These materials, when used to make eco-friendly tapes allow producers and importers and plastic waste processors to choose a better alternative than plastic.
These are the materials that are used in making of eco-friendly tapes:
1. Kraft paper- Derived from wood pulp, kraft paper provides strength and durability while being recyclable and compostable.
2. Water-based adhesives- Unlike solvent-based adhesives, water-based adhesives are free from harmful chemicals and are easily biodegradable.
3. Natural rubber – It is derived from rubber trees and it’s a renewable resource that offers excellent adhesive properties.
These material themselves are harmless to the environment and degrade very easily.
Eco-Friendly Tapes are Beneficial to the Environment
Here are the benefits of eco-friendly tapes’ adoption by brands and producing companies in sustainable packaging:
- Eco-friendly tapes decrease the amount of non-biodegradable waste generated from packaging.
- These tapes can be easily recycled or composted, contributing to the circular economy.
- As environmental awareness grows, consumers are increasingly favoring products packaged with eco-friendly materials.
- Companies that adopt sustainable packaging practices enhance their brand image and attract environmentally conscious customers.
Impact on the Environment
When we choose to use a bio degradable material over plastics, it has significant impact on the environment as follows:
1. If companies and brands use sustainable packaging materials, including eco-friendly tapes, they can reduce their carbon emissions.
2. Eco-friendly tapes promote the responsible use of resources by utilizing renewable and recyclable materials.
3. The use of non-plastic tapes helps combat plastic pollution, which poses severe threats to ecosystems and marine life.
Eco-friendly tapes for sustainable packaging represent a significant step towards reducing the environmental impact of packaging materials. If we start adopting these tapes, we can contribute to a greener future, protect natural resources, and mitigate the adverse effects of plastic pollution. It is essential for businesses to prioritize sustainability and embrace eco-friendly alternatives (as suggested in EPR) to create a more environmentally conscious society.
- Last updated on Aug 24, 2023