Posts with term Häagen-Dazs X

4 Reality Checks About Packaging and the Great Pacific Garbage Patch

Kids are visual — and keyed in to change. So, when a friend’s 10-year-old, Everleigh, engaged me in a conversation about what plastics were doing to the oceans, I gave her my full attention. “Let me show you,” she said. She pulled up a Tik-tok video, and I watched as a massive crane dumped thousands upon thousands of large plastic containers and other debris onto the deck of a ship. Part of the notorious Great Pacific Garbage Patch, this junk had been successfully scooped up from the sea. Everleigh’s excitement over the progress this video shares is why we see so many leading brands pledge to help rid the planet of waste. She is their future customer. Or maybe not. Here’s what we know: • 92% of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch (GPGP) is comprised of large-sized debris, containing nearly 1.8 trillion pieces of plastic. • 8% of the GPGP is comprised of single-use plastic packaging, but a larger percentage is tossed into rivers where debris flows downstream, breaks apart. and end up on the ocean floor. • Compounding this problem, large debris eventually breaks down to pieces no larger than a centimeter, called “microplastics.” • Over time, microplastics sink to the ocean floor where they are impossible to remove; they are mistaken for food by marine life. • Discarded fishing nets — also known as ghost nets — along with other fishing industry debris, account for 46% of the GPGP’s mass. Marine life often gets caught in the nets. Reality Check #1: According to the National Geographic Society, as of 2018, it would take 67 ships operating every day for one year to rid the GPGP of just 1% of the debris. Can it be cleaned up? Although the outlook seems bleak, there are advances under way that leverage science and technology to clean up the GPGP. The Ocean Clean Up project announced in October of 2021 that its experimental clean-up fleet had successfully cleared more than 63,000 pounds of plastic debris in a single haul. Based on these findings, the organization is increasing its fleet and is greatly optimistic it’ll reduce up to 50% of the patch every five years, with the end goal of removing the great patch altogether by 2040. It’s worth noting that these projections include debris that is continuously being added to the patch. Reality check #2: According to Covestro, a global supplier of high-tech polymer materials, “Infrastructure systems designed to manage and collect waste have struggled to keep up with the dramatic rise of single-use plastics in circulation, and as a result, plastic pollution has increased rapidly in recent years, especially in developing countries.” Why add to the patch in the first place? It’s long been my belief as a packaging designer that the problem is not only the patch itself, but the process that created it. In other words, we have a responsibility to accelerate packaging innovation to avoid adding fuel to the fire that is the patch. We need smarter ways to design reusable and biodegradable packaging and become true players in the circular economy. Remember, the next generation is watching. Kids are not only seeing the tortoise in distress with the straw in its nose; they are also learning about the perils of plastic in school. Brands that take this seriously will not only make good on their pledges, but fuel their appeal to the next generation and outperform lagging competitors. So, who’s getting it right? Loop Ulta Beauty Group Shot-web_0.jpg Closing the Loop. Loop is a subscription service for food and household goods, launched by TerraCycle. The Loop services are offered through major chains such as Walgreens and Kroger. Currently testing their concept nationally, the service provides people with products in reusable packaging, such as shampoo bottles and ice cream containers. Once empty, packaging is picked up, refilled, and reused. Loop has also partnered with Ulta Beauty, a national personal care brand, to offer its portfolio of sustainable products. As befits its name, Loop is a prime example of the emerging circular economy. Companies are reinventing reusable. Just take a look at what Häagen-Dazs is offering through Loop. As part of a reusable delivery strategy, the brand created an attractive stainless-steel canister. The design is ideal for a premium brand. The containers provide a new canvas for packaging ingenuity. Reminiscent of old-school metal lunch canisters, images and graphics jump off the silver background. With such a substantial upgrade, Häagen-Dazs stands out from other premium ice creams, essential in a competitive category. Thanks to this packaging, the ice cream is even more fun and delicious to eat. The double-walled container allows the ice cream to melt more quickly at the top than at the bottom. This way, people enjoy a balanced level of density. The ice cream maintains its consistency even when you reach the bottom. The container also protects the product throughout transport. This is more than just sustainable packaging; it’s packaging that elevates the consumer experience. Colgate-recyclable-tubes-web.jpg It’s on record, more than a billion toothpaste tubes in the US alone end up in landfills. No doubt many go to the oceans. One reason for this is that the packaging is manufactured with multiple layers making it ineligible for recycling. Colgate-Palmolive spent five years developing a new recyclable tube made of high-density polyethylene (HDPE), the same plastic that is used for milk jugs, with the promise of compatibility with our current recycling infrastructure. This is no doubt a breakthrough for the category. Reality Check #3: While this is a great concept, we know a large portion of recyclable packaging still goes to waste. That’s because our recycling industry (the people who pick up/sort our trash) urgently needs an overhaul. How does the recycling facility know the difference between this tube and every other? Tom-Newmaster-recyclable-tubes-quote-web.jpg Sugarcane — how sweet it is. Sugarcane usage as a packaging material is blowing up right now. It possesses the trifecta of ethical packaging benefits: it’s renewable, biodegradable, and compostable. In fact, anything made from sugarcane will degrade within 60 to 90 days. We’re seeing it everywhere: coffee cups, utensils, single-use plates, to-go boxes, bags, lids, pizza boxes, straws, and tons more. Companies like Good Start Packaging — a leading source of sugarcane packaging — are also a real threat to expanded polystyrene foam (EPS). Here’s a material that takes 500 years to degrade and consumes 30% of the space in every landfill. If it goes to the ocean, EPS inevitably breaks down into microplastic. And we all know what that does to marine life. A parting word from Everleigh.
I mentioned my friend’s daughter Everleigh who, at 10, is passionate about preserving our oceans. So, what can we do to assure her generation they’re being heard? We can start by taking accountability for the role our industries play in addressing the problems. I’ve talked about some of the innovations and new materials that packagers are bringing to the table. I’ve also shared what activists are doing to clean up the GPGP. But here’s the final reality check. Reality check #4: We can fix the mistakes of past generations, but it takes more forward thinking to make our efforts toward sustainability “sustainable.” Four questions we need to ask ourselves to really bring about change: 1.  How can we improve the recycling infrastructure so that the degradable toothpaste tube goes to the right place? According to Unilever, “It’s technically possible to recycle about 70% of our product portfolio. However, what is actually recycled is lower because of the lack of infrastructure of communities.” 2.  How we ensure that new materials, whether sugarcane or innovative plastics, get sorted correctly and not end up in the ocean? 3.  How do we advance the use of products that truly fit the circular economy, such as reusables, compostables, and post-consumer recycled plastics (PCR)? 4.  How do we partner with our clients to create packaging that would delight Everleigh’s generation? This starts with avoiding new plastics; instead using only recycled options. As a packaging designer, I realize this isn’t a small ask, but a necessary one, considering the power each generation has on the way we live our lives, conduct business, and confront change. If we want to create a loyal customer base, we need to accept that the “wonder material” known as plastic needs to adapt well to our new circular economy.

Online shopping is booming. Startups have a few ideas to make it more sustainable.

Goodbye, cardboard boxes and daily deliveries. Retailers are turning to reusable packaging and consolidated drop-offs to combat climate change.

An Amazon employee scans a package at a fulfillment center in Kegworth, U.K., last October. Corrugated box shipments rose 9 percent at the onset of the pandemic as Americans stocked up on household paper, cleaning supplies and food, and have remained elevated ever since. (Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg) By Abha Bhattarai   The pandemic set off a surge in online shopping — and with it an avalanche of cardboard boxes and home deliveries. Now a crop of start-ups is focused on making e-commerce more sustainable by reimagining the disposable box, delivery conventions and mailing schedules. One such service, Olive, being rolled out Wednesday by Jet.com co-founder Nathan Faust, is partnering with more than 100 major retailers, including Anthropologie, Paige, Ray-Ban and UGG, to consolidate home deliveries in reusable tote bags that are dropped off once a week. Other newcomers, meanwhile, offer reusable plastic mailing boxes, compostable packaging and algae-ink shipping labels. The efforts are part of a larger shift within the retail industry to eliminate single-use cardboard and plastic as consumers increasingly weigh the environmental impacts of fast and easy shipping. Brands such as Clorox, Haagen Dazs and Seventh Generation are moving toward glass, aluminum and stainless steel packaging that can be returned, cleaned and refilled for subsequent uses, with the help of Loop, a program introduced two years ago at the World Economic Forum. Sustainability experts say much of the pollution associated with online shopping occurs during “last mile” delivery, that final stretch from warehouse to doorstep. But they say packaging is perhaps an easier — and more tangible — problem to solve. Consumers’ increased reliance on online shopping during the pandemic also put a spotlight on discarded cardboard piling up in recycling bins across the country. Corrugated box shipments rose 9 percent early in the pandemic as Americans stocked up on household paper, cleaning supplies and food, and they have remained elevated in the months since, according to industry data. “There are trade-offs to shopping online and in stores,” said Scott Matthews, a civil and environmental engineering professor at Carnegie Mellon University who has been studying the environmental effects of retail practices since the early 2000s. “But packaging will always be a problem that needs to be addressed.” Faust got the idea for Olive while he was taking out the trash one night. “After 30 minutes of breaking down boxes and multiple trips down the driveway, it dawned on me that this is crazy,” said Faust, 41, who co-founded Jet.com and five years ago sold it to Walmart for $3.3 billion. “Twenty-five years into online shopping, and this is what status quo delivery looks like.” He came up with a blueprint for a company that would not only reduce the amount of waste being shipped to customers’ homes but also streamline deliveries so that orders from multiple retailers are dropped off in a batch, instead of piecemeal. More than 100 apparel retailers — including Anthropologie, Finish Line, Ralph Lauren and Saks Fifth Avenue — have signed on for the service, which is backed by venture capital. “The real power comes in the last mile to the consumer’s doorstep, where so much of the emissions in the post-purchase supply chain come from, largely because it’s an average of one box per stop on the delivery route,” Faust said. “That’s where we have the biggest impact.”   Shoppers buy items as they normally would, using the company’s app or a Google Chrome plugin. When it’s time to check out, Olive has the order routed to one of its two warehouses, in Southern California or northern New Jersey. From there, workers unpack individual orders, recycle packing materials and place items in a reusable bag that is delivered once a week. The service’s benefits, Faust says, are twofold: It ensures more packaging materials are recycled properly at Olive’s facilities while eliminating multiple delivery trips throughout the week. To return an item, the shopper places it back in the shipping tote for the U.S. Postal Service to pick up. Consumers can also collapse the bag and mail it back to Olive. The service is free for consumers; Olive makes money by taking a roughly 10 percent share of each retail order. Faust says consumers are willing to wait a few extra days for their orders if it means dealing with less waste, though analysts say that could be a difficult proposition given that services such as Amazon Prime have conditioned shoppers to expect just about anything to arrive within a day or two.   To that end, Faust says he is focused on apparel orders, which tend to be fragmented because consumers buy from a range of sites, all with their own delivery timetables and conventions. The segment also has the highest return rates in e-commerce, making it a particularly good fit for reusable packaging. “With apparel, there aren’t preconceived notions of when should some things how up like there is when you shop on Amazon,” he said, adding that the company plans to eventually expand into other categories, such as cosmetics, and add more advanced tracking and delivery information. “Even when you’re buying from the same retailer, one shirt might come right away. Another might take a week. Waiting an extra two or three days for us to bring everything to you — we think the majority of customers will prefer to take that delay for waste-free delivery and doorstep returns.” The more efficient online shopping becomes, the better environmental option it becomes to in-store shopping, said Matthews of Carnegie Mellon.   Delivery trucks can make more concentrated deliveries instead of boomeranging around town, he said, resulting in lower greenhouse gas emissions. Plus, a delivery truck that makes dozens of stops an hour is more efficient than individual shoppers driving to several stores for a handful of items at a time, he said. Retailers have also become more careful about packaging and box size, which has helped curtail waste. Amazon, which accounts for nearly 40 percent of the country’s online sales, said it has reduced packaging by 33 percent since 2015, eliminating more than 900,000 tons of packaging material, equivalent to 1.6 billion shipping boxes. (Amazon’s founder, Jeff Bezos, owns The Washington Post.) “Twenty years ago, if you ordered a book, it’d arrive in a big box with [Styrofoam] peanuts or bubble wrap,” Matthews said. “Nowadays it comes in very streamlined packaging, maybe even in a padded envelope, which means you don’t fill up trucks as fast.” When the pandemic hit last year, high-end shoe company Charix moved all of its business online. Sales boomed sixfold — but so did returns and exchanges. “We quickly realized e-commerce is very different from traditional retail,” said Suley Ozbey, who founded the D.C.-based company in 2015. “We’d get shoes back in boxes that we couldn’t use again, and it was piling up,” he said. “Our neighbors were complaining that we were taking up all of the dumpsters and we felt like, oh no, we’re throwing many good boxes.” He began looking for alternatives and found Boox, which offers brightly colored reusable plastic mailing boxes with a velcro-like fastener and don’t require packing tape. Ozbey pays about $2 per Boox, versus about 75 cents for a cardboard box, but said the investment has been worthwhile. Each plastic container can be used up to a dozen times before it’s recycled.   “There’s no clutter, there’s no trash,” he said. Boox, started six months ago by restauranteur-turned-entrepreneur Matthew Semmelhack, sells its reusable plastic mailing boxes to more than 30 specialty retailers, including Ren Skincare, Boyish Jeans and Curio Spice Co. It is nearing 50,000 shipments a month, with half of those boxes being returned by consumers. “The folding cardboard box was invented 120 years ago and hasn’t changed much since then,” said Semmelhack, 38, who lives in Petaluma, Calif. “But the way we receive packages and products has changed wildly over the last 10 or 20 years. And now with the pandemic, the number of products coming to our door has skyrocketed.” Each box can be reused about a dozen times, he said. Once returned, they’re quarantined for a week then cleaned using organic soap and water before being redeployed for more deliveries. Once the box is done for good, Semmelhack said the company works with a manufacturer that can break down the corrugated polypropylene into plastic flakes and be turned into more boxes more efficiently than cardboard recycling. Customers can return or exchange their products in the same box, or they can flatten it into an envelope and return it by mail to Boox for reuse. “The grand vision is to never throw a box away and never make a new one,” Semmelhack said. “But first we need to show that behavioral change is possible.”

A big test of reusable packaging for groceries comes to Canada

Loop launches online supermarket in partnership with Loblaws and big food brands Emily ChungAlice HoptonTashauna Reid

  Loop, an online store selling well-known food brands in reusable, returnable containers, has partnered with Loblaws to put sustainably packaged groceries to the test in Canada. 2:07     An online store has launched in Ontario selling groceries and household items from Loblaws in containers it will take back and refill — a test of whether Canadian consumers are ready to change their habits. Industry-watchers say it is breaking ground for reusable packaging. The store, called Loop, launched in Canada on Feb. 1, in partnership with supermarket giant Loblaws, and offers items like milk, oats, ice cream and toothpaste for delivery in most of Ontario. Loop is already operating in the continental U.S., the U.K and France. Included so far are some products from well-known brands such as PC sauces and oils, Häagen-Dazs ice cream, Heinz ketchup, Chipits chocolate chips and Ocean Spray cranberries. "The goal is really validating that this is something the Canadian public is interested in," said Tom Szaky, founder and CEO of Loop and its parent company TerraCycle. Unlike existing small no-waste retailers, they want to offer "your favourite product at your favourite retailer in a reusable and convenient manner." The involvement of a huge retailer makes the launch notable in terms of scale and who it will reach, said Tima Bansal, Canada Research Chair in business sustainability at Western University in London, Ont. "I think it's at the scale that's needed to create the change in the community in Canada more generally," she said.

How it works for customers

Szaky likens Loop to the reusable bottle system for beer in Canada "but expanding it to any product that wants to play in the [North American] ecosystem." The ultimate goal, he said, is to give people a greener way to consume that limits the amount of mining and farming needed to produce packaging. "This allows us to greatly reduce the need to extract new materials, which is the biggest drain on our environment.   Nestle's stainless steel Häagan Dazs ice cream container designed for use with Loop cost a million dollars to develop, said Loop's founder. Customers have to pay a $5 deposit on the reusable container. (Chris Crane/TerraCycle/The Associated Press) Loopstore.ca currently lists just 98 products, although many are sold out or "coming soon." As with other online grocery stores, customers fill their virtual shopping cart, but in addition to the cost of the item itself, they pay a deposit for its container. That can range from 50 cents for glass President's Choice salsa jars like the ones that are normally at the supermarket to $5 for a stainless steel Häagen-Dazs ice cream tub. The items are delivered to a customer's home by courier FedEx for a $25 fee, although the fee is waived for orders over $50. Once you've spooned out all the salsa or ice cream or squeezed out all the toothpaste, the container doesn't go in the recycling bin. Instead, you toss them into the tote bag they came in — even if they're dented or damaged — and they get picked up.   When customers have emptied the reusable containers, they are supposed to put them back in the Loop tote for pick up, cleaning and refilling. (Kraft Heinz Canada/The Canadian Press) "What we're trying to achieve with Loop ... is similar to your recycling bin," Szaky said. "Your recycling bin doesn't care where you bought the package you're putting into it. It just cares that it is recyclable. And that's incredibly convenient." In the future, Loop hopes to also sell products in reusable packaging in their own section or aisle in the supermarket to "make reuse as easy as absolutely possible," Szaky said. And he expects customers will also be able to return the containers to participating stores.

How it works for manufacturers, retailers

It's Loop's job to manage the waste, Szaky said. All the used containers are sent to a facility where they get sorted, cleaned, and sent back to manufacturers who refill them. Manufacturers are required to design packaging that can be expected to survive being filled and refilled at least 10 times. "And if it one day breaks … then the materials have to be recyclable back into that same package," Szaky said.   Burger King plans to launch reusable packaging through Loop later this year, as does Tim Hortons. (Burger King/REUTERS) He noted that making the switch to reusable packaging isn't easy for manufacturers, who have to make big adjustments to their entire production process. "It's creating a blend of brand new supply chain on a product-by-product, country-by-country basis. So it is a behemoth task." For example, for Nestlé, developing a new Häagen-Dazs ice cream tub was "about a million dollar project — just that one package," Szaky said. But he added that 15 of the world's largest retailers and 100 major consumer product companies have signed up, and Nestlé has even invested in Loop. "The world's biggest organizations … are taking it very seriously," he said.   In France, where Loop launched earlier, products are also available in stores. For Canada, that is expected to come later. (Loop) In Canada, Loblaws is currently Loop's exclusive partner, but Tim Hortons and Burger King are expected to join later this year. For now, Szaky said, they want to make sure the packaging and products are what people want before scaling up to other retailers and provinces.

'The scale that's needed to create the change'

While a handful of small, zero-waste grocery stores have opened up across the country in recent years, up until now there haven't been any reusable packaging initiatives like this involving large grocery chains and food manufacturers. What's innovative with Loop, said Bansal, is that the would-be waste is moving back through the industrial production cycle. "That's really new. And at that scale, I think we can start to see changes in consumer behaviour." However, she noted there will be challenges, as consumers need to pay the deposits and form new habits. And she thinks change will come slowly. But eventually, she predicts consumers will start to demand reusable packaging. "I think what makes me really excited about the Loblaw-Loop partnership is that it's coming from industry," she added. "I have more hope with this than if it were a government-imposed solution." Laura Yates, a plastics campaigner with Greenpeace Canada, also thinks Loop is a positive development. "It's exactly the type of reuse and refill model that we need," she said. "It's really wonderful that big-name companies that have the resources to invest in developing this type of product delivery system are doing so." She added that once the system is proven, she thinks smaller companies will be able to get funding to develop similar systems. However, she said ultimately, reusable containers can't just be optional for those products. "If they truly want to commit and be a part of moving forward to real solutions, these options need to replace their product lines that are in single use containers and packaging.”

Testing Canada's First Food Delivery Service with Reusable Packaging: Loop

Hoje I'll bring details of a service that I recently tested: Loop . This is a food delivery system created by TerraCycle in order to eliminate the number of garbage that ends up falling into landfills and oceans. When I think of the planet that I want my children (and their children) to live in, I know that services like this should be used and that is why I am writing this post for you today. And the photo above the super happy boys shows that this reason is more than enough, isn't it? Loop is defined as a new way to buy all your favorite products without producing too much waste. The idea is simple: you do NOT need the packaging, but what is inside, correct? So several people can use the same packaging, obviously cleaning and taking important care. This service has already been implemented in the USA and Europe and arrived in Ontario on February 1, 2021.   Below is a summary of how it works, step by step: 1.    You must enter the Loop website and make your purchases here . There are 100 products to choose from and from great brands like Haagen-Dazs, Hersheys, President's Choise and Organic Meadow. There are also little known brands, but they are very pro-nature like Puretto and Noice. 2.    When you make your purchases you will have to make a 100% refundable deposit of the packages, since they are loaned. When you return your products the deposit will be automatically returned to you. 3.    It is worth mentioning here that there is no monthly fee or anything like that and you can use the service as many times as you want. 4.    Delivery is free for purchases over $ 50. 5.    The products are delivered in a box - tote bag - also reusable (see more details about it here ). There is no cardboard, bubble paper or anything that is discarded. The seal that comes in the box must be placed inside it for the company to recycle. The tote bag was made for you to receive and send your products and is completely washable. 6.    After you use all your products you just need to put them washed back in the tote bag and check here for someone to pick up your packaging for free. There is also the option to take to a FedEx drop off point . The service is working so that the packages can be returned to supermarkets and restaurants. This is the seal that comes in the box when you receive it. As it says on it, you must put the cut seal inside the bag for them to recycle. Look at the photo below for the new seal that comes for you to use when sending the products back.   As I said to you, after having consumed all the products, the company's brand comes to pick up the box and uses the seal to close it. The card with your address and that of the company has two sides, so just turn to the side that says: “delivered to the company” and that's it. The products thus come inside the box: all with dividers and a foam that will be cleaned and reused in the next purchase. Obviously - and especially in the times we are living in - the biggest question is about cleaning the packaging. And everything is explained here . In short, there are many rules, audits and laws that make this cleaning safe.   Here are some of the products we received to test this experience: juice, ketchup, tomato sauce, olive oil, soap, dipping sauce, toothpaste and deodorant. As much as the products are from well-known brands they have a difference: on the packaging there is an indication that the product is from the Loop service (most of the time it is on the label). I thought it was great because until we change our habit, this detail reminds us that we can't throw away the packaging. It is worth mentioning that the Loop is just starting here and they intend to expand to other locations in Canada and also to associate with Tim Hortons so that people use reusable cups for their coffees. I loved the experience and I want to become a regular buyer, because I think this small change in our habits can make a lot of difference there in the future.  

The Canadian rummaging through trash cans around the world

Tom Szaky says, “Wow! " Maybe he plugs his nose like we all do, but in front of a full Pampers - just like in front of a cigarette butt, glasses of glasses thrown in the trash or fabrics with enigmatic names of fibers doomed to the dumps. - he sees the opportunity to find a solution. Born in Hungary, arrived in Toronto at the age of 5, now living in New Jersey - he studied at Princeton -, Tom Szaky is truly one of the entrepreneurs who stand out in the world by greedily embracing the challenges of the circular economy. You may know one of his babies, Loop, a company already present in the United States, France and the United Kingdom, which has just arrived in Canada and which allows brands sold in supermarkets to use containers. recorded. It's being tested in Toronto now, in partnership with Loblaw and other well-known brands, such as Heinz or Häagen-Dazs. "It's been just over a week and we've exceeded our one-month goals," Szaky said in a telephone interview. Basically: we order online, it is delivered by Loop, the customer consumes the contents - soup, ketchup, juice, etc. -, and the container is then taken back by a delivery system which will carry everything for cleaning. Then the containers will return to the brands, who will refill them, resell them. You get the picture. And it will be in Montreal at the beginning of 2022, the garbage recycling giant told me. Because there isn't just Loop in the life of the 39-year-old entrepreneur. There is also TerraCycle, his first company, dedicated to the transformation of waste. His first product, at the very beginning, in 2001, was kitchen waste, which he vermicomposted, sold in recycled plastic bottles. But today, it has gone much further in the recovery and transformation of waste long considered irrecoverable, such as dirty disposable diapers - which its teams make into plastics in particular - and cigarette butts, from which they also extract plastics from the filter, while composting the rest of the tobacco. TerraCycle also works to collect and process plastic bottles around the world. Because the company is everywhere, from Tokyo to Trenton, in Ontario, present in twenty countries. With laboratories all over the place, but mainly in New Jersey - in a landfill - TerraCycle is constantly doing research. Its business model: wait for a major player to ask for its help. The company does not seek to sell its green solutions. She finds solutions for those who want them. In large scale. Its partners are called Walgreens, Home Hardware, Procter & Gamble… The list goes on. One of the next projects: promoting waste as an information medium. The contents of diapers say a lot about the health of babies, as does used oil on the condition of engines, says Tom Szaky. You might as well take advantage of everything that can be revealed.   Another avenue explored: the Loop system of material reuse in a loop, but applied to cloth diapers and children's clothing. It's coming fast in the United States and the United Kingdom. In both cases, in partnership with very large companies. So, we forget the small community cloth diaper cleaning service. We think big brands sold in supermarkets. With cleaning, transport and reuse systems in the case of diapers. And simply a cash deposit system, such as a deposit, in the case of baby clothes. Deposit that we recover, of course, by bringing back clothes that have become too small. *** TerraCycle is not a newcomer to the world of waste recovery and recycling. It was founded in 2001 when young Szaky was a student at Princeton. It was during a trip with friends from university to Montreal, at this time, that he saw for the first time worms transforming organic waste into compost and that he had the idea of make the first product of his waste recovery business. Today, about a third of the company's work is industrial waste, and the rest is our everyday consumer waste. The next challenge right now is, you guessed it, on the side of masks, gloves and all the disposable equipment used in the fight against COVID-19. “There's a whole new stream of waste here,” says Szaky. TerraCycle takes care of it.   But the real challenge, 20 years after the discovery of vermicomposting, is no longer concentrated at all towards the quest for new waste streams, new gold in the bins. The new frontier is logistics on a large scale, the search for solutions that work on a large scale and, above all, very, very large. Loop, for example, now operates on a large scale in the United Kingdom with the giant Tesco, in France with Carrefour, and in the United States with notably Walgreens and Burger King! Major players.   Currently, explains Mr. Szaky, there is a remarkable awakening of individuals to the need to produce less waste as well as to recover and reuse objects. Consumers' support is therefore less difficult to obtain than before. Loop's home in Toronto is one example, as is the proliferation of grocery stores offering unpackaged products. But the world of recovery and reuse is also becoming more complex, and the financial challenges are not trivial. The price of oil is low, so there is less reason to want to recover its derivatives otherwise. Also, the raw material is not what it was 20 years ago. There is less waste than before, they are lighter, packaging is often made with more complex materials, more difficult to work with and to break down. (Besides, Szaky thinks that packaging should be simplified, not become more and more multi-layered and multi-material.) Countries that bought waste from others became more demanding. We saw it, in Quebec, when China started to refuse our waste.   When I ask him if the company also intends to take new paths to integrate its work into larger, more global pollution reduction systems, Tom Szaky answers no. “You want to focus on one problem and be good,” he says. So Loop does not come with a guarantee of green transport, for example. It is up to the partners to then be consistent. In France, Carrefour is looking for a solution for “green” delivery. And can consumers do more to recycle better?   Should we buy everything second-hand? At TerraCycle, offices all over the planet are fitted out and furnished with recycled materials, used objects. “Actually, no,” Mr. Szaky replies. “What is needed more than anything is buying less. "

Meet the company that is revolutionizing e-commerce by conquering the mountain of packages outside your front door

It’s no surprise that convenient, generalist websites like Amazon are thriving this year as the coronavirus pandemic has forced most Americans into their homes for the long haul. In fact, in March and April, Amazon was even discouraging its customers from purchasing too many items, as the massive influx of orders was causing a shortage of items and shipping delays. Those issues aside, a growing reliance on online shopping is weighing heavily on the environment. According to Adobe Digital Economy Index’s latest data, U.S. e-commerce jumped by 49 percent in April, with online grocers experiencing a 110 percent boost in daily sales between March and April. Recent data suggests that e-commerce giant Alibaba’s single-day sales hit more than $38 billion in revenue this year, and according to Adept Packaging, those additional e-commerce sales resulted in 75 million extra plastic bags. Here is where industry newcomer Loop swoops in — the brainchild of entrepreneur Tom Szaky, who created the innovative recycling company TerraCycle as a Princeton drop out with the goal to recycle the food waste from the university dining halls into fertilizer. His company is now worth $20 million, and he’s branching out. In May of 2019 the program first started a webshop, supplying customers with the products they already know and love, from Haagen Dazs ice cream to Pantene shampoo and conditioner. The twist? Their containers were not just recyclable, but truly reusable — meaning they could be cleaned and then given a new life, if not a hundred. Now, big name retailers including Kroger are planning to make space in stores for Loop next year, utilizing TerraCycle’s refillable packaging system. Customers will be able to visit Loop stations to purchase a wide array of household products, all sold in stainless steel tins that Loop has specifically designed to eventually be returned, cleaned and sold again in a “milkman” style system. The refundable packaging does come at a small cost to consumers, who are required to pay a deposit that ranges from $1 to $10, depending on the container’s size and material. Loop’s Global Vice President of Creative and Communications, Lauren Taylor, says that the pandemic has fortunately not forced the company to shift priorities, sharing that, in fact, sales are at a platform-high. “Our priorities will continue to be aimed at eliminating waste and offering consumers their favorite brands and products in higher quality, better designed reusable packaging.” “Loop just launched in the United Kingdom July 15, and as of Sep. 15, 2020, Loop will be available to consumers in every ZIP code in the 48 contiguous U.S. states,” says Taylor. “Next year we will launch in Toronto, Tokyo and Australia. We are also working with select fast-food restaurants and beauty stores to provide reusable packaging to consumers. Be on the lookout for that in 2021.” How might that experience look in store? Well, at places such as Tesco in the United Kingdom and Carrefour in France, customers can be on the lookout for Loop corners, or areas of a store designed for products packaged in Loop’s containers. Aeon Co., Japan’s largest supermarket group, also plans to introduce Loop corners to 16 of their stores in the greater Tokyo area by next March. “We want people to come in and fall in love with these really cute, beautiful packages, understand the message and get excited about it,” Satoshi Morikiyo, general manager of  convenience goods at Aeon, told The Wall Street Journal. “Shopping trips are not necessarily something people look forward to, but this is a cool experience that offers something of a discovery—something new and fun.” Indeed, Taylor tells Changing America that with more than 100,000 people signed up for Loop, they’re excited to be expanding their services to the entirety of the continental United States and that rapidly growing consumer demand has secured Loop more than 80 partners and 400 products — a number that continues to grow weekly.

TerraCycle’s Loop platform hits milestone reach across 48 states

TerraCycle’s reuse platform Loop is now available online in every ZIP code in the 48 contiguous states, a major milestone after the program first launched in 2019. Kroger and Loblaw are partners of the platform, among other retailers, and a TerraCylce representative recently told Store Brands that it would be developing a reusable container for select private brands to buy at those physical stores in 2021. The Loop program began in the Northeastern United States and Paris, France, and entered the United Kingdom in July, working with more than 80 brands and 400 products globally. More than 100,000 people have signed up for the service. Loop enables shoppers to buy brands in a durable, reusable package. It’s a circular system, designed to end single-use packaging. For example, a shopper can buy a silver tin for Haagen-Dazs ice cream that was developed with Loop from a retailer like Kroger or Walgreens, which gets shipped by Loop (or picked up at the store) and then shopper returns the container when done through Loop’s shipping system to get it refilled. The company likens it to the days of the milkman.

Sustainability Takes Center Stage

It’s a bit of an understatement to say that health concerns are currently driving consumer behaviors and purchases in today’s marketplace. Research conducted by Paris-based Ipsos in July showed that 85% of consumers are concerned about the COVID-19 outbreak. According to the Washington, D.C.-based International Food Information Council, that same percentage of consumers (85%) reported that they’ve changed the way they eat or prepare food in the wake of the pandemic. While the novel coronavirus is a major, and arguably overriding, worry, that doesn’t mean that people aren’t making decisions based on other timely situations, from social issues to environmental concerns.

McDonald’s Partners With Loop to Pilot Reusable Packaging

With the restaurant industry currently being reinvented with to-go-first experiences in mind, there’s cause to worry that the shift will add even more single-use cups, straws, and boxes to our already bulging landfills. So it makes for a small silver lining that McDonald’s today announced a partnership with Terracycle’s zero-waste platform Loop to pilot a reusable cup model. The program will first be trialed at select McDonald’s in the UK in 2021. For a small deposit, customers will get a reusable Loop cup for their hot beverages. The deposit can be redeemed by returning the cup to any participating McDonald’s location, according to today’s press release. Loop will retrieve the used cups, wash them, and return them to the cycle. As to whether this reusable cup program will make its way to the States, a McDonald’s spokesperson said, “The feedback collected through these packaging trials will help inform which options are scaled up or adopted in other countries around the world.”

Retailers Design the In-Store Experience for Reusable Packaging

Tom Szaky, the chief executive and founder of TerraCycle, imagines a world where shoppers take their trash with them to the grocery store. In his vision, people purchase products like ice cream and deodorant in reusable containers. At the cashier, they pay an additional cost: a refundable packaging deposit. They return empty containers to the store, which collects them for cleaning and reuse. The consumer gets each deposit back and buys another tub of ice cream or stick of deodorant from the shelf. The cycle starts again. Soon Mr. Szaky is going to find out if his idea can work in the real world. Retailers including Kroger Co. next year plan to make space in stores for Loop, TerraCycle’s refillable packaging platform. Tesco PLC in the U.K. and Carrefour SA in France also are planning to install in-store Loop “corners”—areas of a store designed for products packaged in Loop’s containers—in the next 12 months. Loblaws Inc. in Canada and Woolworths Group Ltd. in Australia will bring Loop stations to stores sometime in 2022, a Loop representative said. Aeon Co., Japan’s largest supermarket group, plans to introduce Loop corners to 16 stores in the greater Tokyo area next March. “We want people to come in and fall in love with these really cute, beautiful packages, understand the message and get excited about it,” said Satoshi Morikiyo, general manager of  convenience goods at Aeon. “Shopping trips are not necessarily something people look forward to, but this is a cool experience that offers something of a discovery—something new and fun.”