Swedish multinational clothing-retail giant, H&M Group has presented a new multi-brand paper packaging system that is recyclable and reusable. With shopping online swelling globally along with plastic waste, H&M feels a necessity to look for alternative solutions for sustainable packaging.
The goal of this new solution is to decrease the risk of making more waste.
H&M Group stated, “With Black Week just behind us and holidays knicking at the door, online shopping has got its peak. And owing to the COVID-19 pandemic captivating over this year, it is safe to say that e-commerce has changed forever. But while online orders increasing as a general global trend, so is the packaging waste. Most of it being plastic that ends up in landfills or in the ocean, having an extremely negative impact on our planet.”
In the apparel fashion industry, plastic is one of the main challenges. It is not only used in synthetic materials such as polyester, but also in hangers, hang tags, single use shopping bags and polybags.
As for packaging, plastic is partially used to guard some products and avert waste, which makes it even more interesting to replace. The question arises: How can the industry stop packaging from becoming waste itself and at the same time bring top-quality products?
At H&M’s distribution centres in Netherlands, UK, Sweden, China, Russia and Australia, masses of packages have been sent to consumers as part of a test for more sustainable packaging solutions.
Inspired by the packaging strategy and to become a fully circular group, H&M Group has established a multi-brand packaging system with bags made of certified paper. When opened, the bags are recyclable.
Besides, the branding labels now allow group’s brands to be more pertinent with messaging, though the bags have a cleaner and better look. This in turn stops packages having out-of-date messages on them, stopping another waste risk.
“We are introducing a type of packaging that is better for both the customer and the environment. It is yet to be improved since we need to continue working on replacing the use of plastic throughout our logistics supply chain. But by introducing this new multi-brand packaging we are creating a huge impact by replacing the outer plastic with a paper solution. This is a small step on a long journey,” said Hanna Lumikero, Service Owner and responsible for the New Packaging System at H&M Group.
To date, the new packaging solution has been presented to customers at COS, ARKET, Monki and Weekday.
The H&M brand has started to implement it in designated markets, and this will only surge during the upcoming months and with that, reach an even bigger group of customers globally.
In the start of 2021, the brand will ship their online orders in recyclable paper-packaging.
Lumikero told, “We use valuable input from our customers to improve and we know that they are happy about receiving their orders in more sustainable packaging. At the same time, we are committed to reducing plastic throughout our business and value chain. That is why we will implement this packaging solution in all of our brands.”
The packaging solution will aid H&M Groups towards getting the goals of its circular strategy for packaging, including dipping packaging by 25% and designing reusable, recyclable or compostable packaging by 2025 at latest.