With that said there are still some thresholds, and the views of recycling differ slightly between countries. In many parts of the world, recycling is often perceived to be a governmental issue rather than a personal responsibility. For example, the Chinese persons interviewed in our consumer study seemed to have expectations for the government, manufacturers and brand owners to take action in this matter.
Brand owners who choose packaging for their products do actually have the power to simplify the process of recycling since consumers’ willingness to recycle is closely linked to the amount of effort it takes. In other words, packaging is good packaging or bad, which is determined by the effort required from the consumer. Packaging made of paperboard is much better viewed than plastic. For example, 96% of consumers in the UK said that they recycle paperboard.
In general, consumers prefer only one packaging material as then it all goes into the same bin. They also like paperboard packaging since it is most obvious where to put it – there is simply no misconception possible.
Providing information about recyclability is also a great way to encourage recycling. Good packaging has a recycling symbol and instructions printed on the package, to make it easy for consumers.
So, what about packaging that is not so good? Such a packagin requires more effort from the consumer when trying to recycle it. Packaging that has different parts to be separated due to different material can also be seen as bad packaging. If there is more than one material, the greatest part often determines the recycle bin. Not everyone is ready to take the effort of separating the materials.
With this in mind, keep your packaging simple and provide clear information in order to simplify the recycling activities by the consumer. Paperboard has advantages due its printable surface that delivers the message and due to consumers’s good knowledge on how to recycle it, so you will meets both the needs of the consumer and the environment!