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SUSTAINABLE PACKAGING IS NO LONGER A LUXURY BUT AN ESSENTIAL FOR CPGS

Drishti Masand, Analyst

Consumer demands and government regulations have already led to packaging changes, but the time is now to build an innovation strategy, according to Lux Research 

BOSTON, MA, August 3, 2021The turbulent events of 2020 significantly altered consumer behavior and interaction with consumer packaged goods (CPG). These changes are impacting companies and challenging them to shift their innovation strategies for the “new” normal, according to new analysis from Lux Research, a leading provider of tech-enabled research and innovation advisory services. Developing more sustainable packaging solutions is a critical business issue for CPGs, and companies need to take on a more active role in sustainable packaging innovation to meet sustainability goals, rather than only depending on vendors.  

Lux’s new report, “Building an Innovation Strategy for Sustainable CPG Packaging,” evaluates existing innovation strategies for CPG companies, allowing them to gain insight into what their peers are doing, and also explores how companies need to adapt innovation strategies to reflect changes in consumer buying methods and habitsLux has identified and explored six strategies that can cumulatively form a thorough roadmap for all brands: 

  • Strategy is driven by regulations, for example, the inclusion of recycled content 

  • Reusable packaging for in-store or e-commerce platforms is gaining momentum as a direct replacement for single-use packaging 

  • Digitalization to integrate data collection and innovation using that 

  • Adoption of alternative materials as direct replacements without changing packaging function 

  • Adopting packaging before product inverse innovation to fit new packaging forms for material and design changes 

  • Design for modularity to eliminate problem articles and make separation and collection of different elements easier 

“Sustainable packaging is a complex challenge, and CPGs will need multiple strategies,” explains Drishti Masand, Analyst at Lux Research and lead author of the report. “The strategies laid out in the report are not exclusive of each other – it is necessary for companies to have some combination of them.” 

Another vital aspect of creating sustainable packaging solutions will be collaboration – both within individual organizations and across the entire supply chain. However, just because it is possible to form partnerships doesn’t mean companies should do so for every technology and every stage of the process. Some of the strategies explored in the report will lend themselves to collaboration with others in the value chain, while others are more suitable for individual companies innovating on their own. Regardless of whether the work is done individually or collaboratively, companies should strive to be transparent in order to allow value chain players, policymakers, and consumers to all progress together toward systemic change. Most importantly, every company needs to get involved in sustainable packaging and stick with the work for genuine progress. 

Lux Research | Building an Innovation Strategy For Sustainable CPG Packaging Press Release

Download the executive summary of the report to learn more.