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Huge opportunity for Helpful Brands to gain market shares

Brand owners that clearly empowers consumers to act more sustainable are in high demand among global consumers. The Billerud Consumer Panel clearly shows that working through packaging sustainability will be a very effective tool to gain benefits and growth on all geographic markets.

Packaging is a clear point of contact with the consumer, regardless of sales channel, and therefore a strategic tool for a brand that is helpful in people’s increasing ambition to become more sustainable-oriented in everyday actions and choices.

Creating sustainable benefits for products, consumers and society

Packaging Sustainability can best be described as the role packaging can play in creating sustainable benefits for products, consumers and society. On a global level there is a strong consensus that consumers will be loyal to brands that take a serious approach to sustainability. In 2017, we initiated a process of measuring and sharing the views of the global consumer in our Billerud Consumer Panel. Being a Helpful Brand and delivering products in a packaging that clearly brings sustainable benefits for people and society had the highest score of all factors in our Consumer Panel 2017.

A holistic view on packaging and the role it plays in our society opens up for new opportunities to increase packaging sustainability, going beyond material and amount of packaging. The time for pursuing packaging sustainability as a brand differentiator is now, and we have data evidence that those brands will be rewarded
Henrik Essén, SVP Sustainability & Communication

Innovations that meet consumer demands

Many brands around the world are already acting on packaging sustainability. The beach plastic bottle, made 25% out of recycled beach plastics, for Head & Shoulders is one example where just packaging makes the difference. Arla Foods, a global top four dairy company, has a clear strategy to make packaging differentiate them from competition with high impact on environmental footprint. The recent introduction of a new Crème Fraiche container in carton instead of plastic allow consumers to recycle tub and lid as paper with higher recycling rates as one benefit. In Sweden, Arla now reached 80% renewable packaging materials in total, another benefit.

Instead of using plastic, the new Crème Fraiche from Arla is designed as a paper cup in carton and can be recycled as paper packaging along with the new sealing lid. Operates in existing machinery.

Helping the consumer be a hero

Consumers see themselves as the primary force to change the future for packaging sustainability, with a global average of 68% in our Consumer Panel. How consumers view the role of brand owners differs per region, with Europe having the highest expectations: 25,5% of the consumers expecting the brand owners to lead them to change. Consumers are ready and willing to do their part and to change their behaviour, but they need help. The most crucial factor is brand owners and the support, inspiration and innovation they can provide to make it easier for consumers to do right. Here is a huge opportunity for Helpful Brands to make a difference and gain market shares.

Top three brand empowering areas

Consumers on all markets states that changed behavior has the biggest impact on sustainable lifestyles, and therefore they need support from brand owners to do better. The top three areas where packaging sustainability can empower your brand and win consumers’ hearts and wallets are 

  • Reduce food waste
  • Increase recycling levels of packaging
  • Reduce plastic littering in the oceans

Branded packaging can be so much more than logo, colors, textures and shapes. Making the packaging a conceptual part of the brand’s positioning can truly lift the consumer experience and show that you and the consumer are part of the same journey toward sustainable consumption.

Interested in finding out more?

Below you’ll find links for further reading about what drives the development within packaging sustainability:

  • Packaging Sustainability for Helpful Brands The Billerud report “Packaging Sustainability for Helpful Brands – views on the role of brand owners in packaging sustainability” introduces packaging sustainability as an opportunity for brands to turn their customers into ambassadors, by meeting their needs and helping them be active in doing the right thing. Read and download the report here. 
  • Billerud Consumer Panel 2017 The report “Billerud Consumer Panel 2017 – views on Packaging Sustainability from around the globe” introduces the views of citizens of megacities, on packaging sustainability, the role they themselves can play and the roles of cities and brand owners. Read and download the report here.
  • Challenging conventional packaging The Billerud report “Challenging conventional packaging – trends that shape Future Business Perspectives” introduces six perspectives on sustainable business development, based on the megatrends that shape our near future. Read and download the report here.

Global trends

We have identified a number of trends that will create business opportunities for the packaging industry and enable continued profitable growth.

BillerudKorsnäs launches unique Packaging Sustainability consumer panel

Megacity citizens positive towards packaging as sustainability problem-solver. Read more.

Challenge your eco-footprint

Sadly, a good amount of the things we throw away aren’t naturally compostable, and should never be treated as such.