Quality challenges for packaging manufacturers
The importance of Circular Economy
With every passing year, it is becoming clear that the traditional and linear modus operandi of manufacturing, transporting, selling, and disposing of products is no longer sustainable. In the current scenario, the consumption of resources overtakes the earth’s capability to replenish it and the amount of waste generated is creating inexorable environmental damage. Single-use virgin plastics are well-known health- hazard and are polluting our oceans with a staggering 13 million tons of plastic being poured into them each year.
The question remains – What are we doing about it? It is alarming to know that today plastic products are manufactured from virgin plastic mostly for single-use purposes. It is not engineered for secure re-use or recyclability, resulting in vast amounts of plastic waste ending up in landfills or polluting our aquatic environment. The single-use of a product is referred to as a linear (or one-way) economy, which cannot remain the status quo for much longer as we risk our environment.
Circular Economy is a way forward
One of the solutions for a sustainable future is the normalization of a circular economy model that addresses the waste issue created by the linear model of single-use virgin plastic. A circular economy creates a loop-like framework that works on transforming a product lifecycle from its beginning to the end. It endorses repurposing and recycling a plastic product, recapturing the waste and upgrading it into high-quality raw material to maximise a product’s lifetime and usability. As a result, it reduces the energy consumption to create a new one. According to the Ellen McArthur Foundation, a circular economy decouples economic activity from the consumption of finite resources. It is a resilient system that is good for business, people and the environment. The Foundation further bases circular economy on three principles, driven by design:
· Eliminate waste and pollution
· Circulate products and materials (at their highest value)
· Regenerate nature
Embracing the circular economy framework, Shieldler® aims to break through the linear model status quo in some of the heaviest users of single-use virgin plastics – healthcare and pharma. Through our re-invented sustainable products made from Revived plastic waste and recycling plastic waste programmes, we help our partners to not only reduce the virgin plastic waste they generate but also clean up the environment from the waste accumulated in the current linear model. Most importantly, we at Shieldler® are striving to change the framework of how these industries approach plastic in product development and use and reprioritize the importance of using sustainable plastic solutions by recycling post-consumer waste and taking accountability for their impact.