Replacing single use expendable packaging or heavy steel stillages with lightweight foldable plastic packaging throughout intercontinental supply chains will transform your returnable loops into a sustainable operation.

The view of many OEMs is that it is much easier to use expendable plastic and cardboard to ship components from tier suppliers, this creates vast quantities of waste. Or to simply continue to use the same packaging solutions that have been in place for previous vehicles.

This is the easy option but is it the best business case, both financially and environmentally?

By simply creating a returnable loop within your global supply chain, you remove the need for expendable packaging. This removes the cost of continuously purchasing packaging as well as the cost and environmental impact of waste disposal.

Furthermore, introducing foldable plastic packaging removes the need for heavy steel packaging, reducing the weight of containers and trailers which is directly related to the carbon emissions created.

Consolidating your packaging needs through simple, effective communication can deliver a series of efficiencies. Taking the time to understand your global footprint and plotting where you can create returnable loops will allow you to reduce the waste you create.

There is no reason not to consider returnable options at a time when the costs of a returnable plastic bin far outweigh that of expendable or heavy alternatives. If you then consider the pack density of returnable solutions, Tier Suppliers can ship more with less when using a returnable solution.

As the pressure to reduce waste and single use material heightens, why are suppliers still purchasing vast quantities of packaging materials that are going straight into the bin?