It’s impossible to avoid the news and chatter surrounding climate change, greenhouse gas emissions, and other environmental issues our planet is currently facing. Some research has suggested that if drastic changes don’t occur quickly, we could see the severe effects of climate change as soon as 2030.  Plastic is a huge problem when it comes to carbon emissions (used in manufacturing it) and waste contribution. About 8 million tons of plastic makes its way into our oceans each year. It’s becoming increasingly important for both companies and consumers to make more sustainable choices.  From a manufacturing perspective, that starts with creating a CSR policy and goes as far as implementing the use of recycled plastic.    So, what are the benefits of using recycled plastic, and how are those benefits passed onto the consumer? 

Having a CSR Policy and a Commitment to Sustainability

A Corporate Responsibility Policy (CSR) is more important for businesses today than ever before. Think of it as a self-regulatory policy for your business; a commitment to contribute to society through a variety of goals. These goals can be environmental, economical, or philanthropic.  Some common examples of things that are included in a CSR policy include: 
  • Improved labor processes
  • Using fair-trade materials
  • Reducing carbon footprint
  • Plastic recycling
  • Environmentally-conscious investments
Brands like Google, Amazon, and Apple are all huge ambassadors for the environment, and it’s likely their CSR policies put a heavy focus on sustainability as they lead the way for other large companies and small businesses alike to take action in fighting against climate change. Using things like recycled plastic is a great way to start. 

How Using Recycled Plastic Helps Your Business

If using recycled plastic seems like it would be a hassle, think again. There are actually many benefits to your business. Not only can it improve your overall image, but it can have a positive impact on your growth and financial returns.  People are more aware of environmental issues facing the planet. Companies who take an initiative to make changes are often viewed in a more positive light, especially from those who are concerned with our environmental future. By using recycled plastic in your manufacturing, you can share with your consumers and followers that you’re taking the right steps toward a more sustainable tomorrow. From a marketing and PR standpoint, that gives your business more opportunities to grow. Additionally, using recycled plastic can actually save you money. It cuts down on the cost of your materials and greatly lowers your dependency on the pricing of plastic. As a result, your bottom line will be improved.  Finally, it’s likely that as environmental concerns continue to rise, the government may issue new federal rules and regulations regarding plastic use in manufacturing. If you establish policies now that use recycled plastic, it will be easier to adapt to those regulations in the future. 

How Will it Benefit the Environment?

Using recycled plastic saves energy, oil, and landfill space across the world. Plastic that needs to be manufactured uses natural resources that are nonrenewable, and when plastic is manufactured, it contributes to pollution. Unfortunately, it’s a vicious cycle that continues, because most plastic ends up in the trash, and eventually in our already overflowing landfills. Recycling just one ton of plastic can save 7.4 cubic yards of space in a landfill. To put that in perspective, a small dump truck can carry about 5 cubic yards. 

What Are the Benefits of Using Recycled Plastic for Consumers? 

Using recycled plastic isn’t just good for your business and for the environment. It’s good for the people who could be buying your products, too!  All of the same benefits apply because more people are taking an interest in the wellbeing of the planet. By using recycled plastic in manufacturing, you can encourage consumers to reduce their carbon footprint and do their own part to protect the planet by continuing to recycle.  When your manufacturing costs are down, you can also pass those savings onto consumers. So, not only is recycled plastic better for the environment, but it’s better for everyone’s wallets, too.  If you’re still doing things the “old fashioned way,” it could be time to update your policies and focus more on a sustainable future. Making the switch to recycled plastic in your manufacturing can make a big difference in your company’s longevity and how potential customers see you as a brand. It’s not hard to implement these changes, it will save you money, and you can feel good knowing you’re stepping up as a business to do something socially and environmentally responsible.