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X Towards Sustainable Packaging Origins of Sustainable Manufacturing: Sustainability Sustainable Manufacturing Sustainable Manufacturing Concepts & Examples Principles of Sustainability         Methods/Guidelines/Regulations        Metrics/Indicators Tools/ Software    

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x towards sustainable packaging
X Towards Sustainable Packaging

Origins of Sustainable Manufacturing: Sustainability

Sustainable Manufacturing

Sustainable Manufacturing Concepts & Examples

  • Principles of Sustainability        
  • Methods/Guidelines/Regulations       
  • Metrics/Indicators
  • Tools/ Software    
x towards sustainable packaging2
X Towards Sustainable Packaging

Origins of Sustainable Manufacturing: Sustainability

Sustainable Manufacturing

Sustainable Manufacturing Concepts & Examples

  • Principles of Sustainability        
  • Methods/Guidelines/Regulations       
  • Metrics/Indicators
  • Tools/ Software  
origins of sustainable manufacturing sustainability
Origins of Sustainable Manufacturing: Sustainability





Product Complexity



Part Precision

sustainable manufacturing
Sustainable Manufacturing
  • Manufacturing is known as a “process by which materials are removed, conserved, and added for the purpose of making products.” [after Dorfeld, 2008] This has traditionally been an inefficient process which is resource and energy intensive and has not yet reached a sustainable state.
  • There are many contemporary frameworks which exist to guide understanding and application of sustainable practices in the world of manufacturing. There are also many tools, methodologies and collections of metrics used apply these frameworks.
  • One can think of sustainable manufacturing as a salad of concepts and practices. Many different ingredients can be thrown into a bowl of social, economic and environmental issues related to manufacturing.
  • Such a mix of sustainable manufacturing concepts can be broken apart and examined in many different ways.
  • In order to explore the concepts associated with sustainable manufacturing we are going to break the salad apart in one way (by principles, methods and metrics) but just as there are other ways to examine a salad’s contents and related parts (whether by food groups, nutritional values, or color) there are other ways to analyze this domain.

Principles, Methods & Metrics

Social, Economic & Environmental Themes

x towards sustainable packaging5
X Towards Sustainable Packaging

Origins of Sustainable Manufacturing: Sustainability

Sustainable Manufacturing

Sustainable Manufacturing Concepts & Examples

  • Principles of Sustainability        
  • Methods/Guidelines/Regulations       
  • Metrics/Indicators
  • Tools/ Software    
sustainable manufacturing concepts examples
Sustainable Manufacturing Concepts & Examples
  • Principles embody certain collections of values which have come to be associated with sustainability concerns at different scopes and scales.
  • (Analytical) methods, (action-oriented) guidelines/scorecards/criteria/decision-making strategies and (evaluatory) regulations/standards are guided by principles. Some agencies create a variety of principles, methods, standards, and regulations that work to address their cause throughout the product lifecycle.
  • Collections of metrics are used by methods and make up regulations
  • The values embedded in all of these concepts evolve from sustainability's core which requires balancing issues related to ecology/environment, economy/employment and equity/equality


Design Guidelines

Scorecards, Checklists & Criteria

Analytical methods

Regulations & Standards


x towards sustainable packaging7
X Towards Sustainable Packaging

Origins of Sustainable Manufacturing: Sustainability

Sustainable Manufacturing

Sustainable Manufacturing Concepts & Examples

  • Principles of Sustainability        
  • Methods/Guidelines/Regulations       
  • Metrics/Indicators
  • Tools/ Software  

guide analysis and action



  • Biomimicry/ Principles of Ecological Design
  • Sanborn Principles
  • Design for Disassembly

Community/Labor &Ecology

  • Houston Principles

Waste Reduction (Affects the Biosphere and Business)

  • Circular Economy
  • Cradle to Cradle
  • Industrial Ecology

Management of Natural Resources in the Biosphere and in Commerce (Managing Impact while Balancing Interests and Values)

  • Precautionary principle
  • Natural Step
  • 5 Capitals Model
  • Triple Bottom Line

Environmental Health & Safety

  • Green Chemistry
  • Toxicology


  • SCP - Sustainable Packaging
  • SJC – Sustainable Packaging
  • Wal-mart - Sustainable Packaging
  • SPA – Sustainable Packaging
  • Sustainable Biomaterials Collaborative – Sustainable Packaging

We are currently working on an spreadsheet to collect and compare principles, their identifying characteristics and source.

houston principles
Houston Principles


“Remind the public that the original purpose behind the creation of corporations was to serve the public interest - namely working people, communities, and the earth.

Seek stricter enforcement of labor laws and advocate for new laws to guarantee working people their right to form unions and their right to bargain collectively.

Make workplaces, communities and the planet safer by reducing waste and greenhouse gas emissions.

Demand that global trade agreements include enforceable labor and environmental standards.

Promote forward-thinking business models that allow for sustainability over the long term while protecting working people, communities, and the environment.”

  • State that the future of a healthy economy and environment are tied, and that labor, environmental and community groups need to work together to take action against corporate power, the undermining of democratic processes and ensure that interests in long-term sustainability are the aim of short-term actions.
  • Created to hold corporations accountable for their impact on:
    • Working people,
    • Communities and
    • The Environment
cradle to cradle
Cradle to Cradle

In Cradle to Cradle, McDonough and Braungart (2002) note that a regenerative environment like a cherry tree is sustainable.

It is a closed loop where Waste (of the system)=(the same system’s) Food.

A manufacturing system can function under those same ideals.

This concept stresses eco-effectiveness, quality prior to quantity, and biological and technical resource cycles which recycle in a manner that instead of “downcycling” the quality of materials, upcycles or regenerates.

“The goal is a delightfully diverse safe and just world with clean air soil power and water economically, equitably, ecologically and elegantly enjoyed.”

sustainable packaging coalition definition
Sustainable Packaging CoalitionDefinition

“to advocate and communicate a positive, robust environmental vision for packaging and to support innovative, functional packaging materials and systems that promote economic and environmental health through supply chain collaboration”

– Sustainable Packaging Coalition

Sustainable packaging:

  • Is beneficial, safe & healthy for individuals and communities throughout its life cycle;
  • Meets market criteria for performance and cost;
  • Is sourced, manufactured, transported, and recycled using renewable energy;
  • Maximizes the use of renewable or recycled source materials;
  • Is manufactured using clean production technologies and best practices;
  • Is made from materials healthy in all probable end of life scenarios;
  • Is physically designed to optimize materials and energy;
  • Is effectively recovered and utilized in biological and/or industrial cradle to cradle cycles.
scj sustainable packaging definition
SCJ Sustainable Packaging Definition

Sustainable packaging:

  • Is capable of being produced indefinitely by the planet;
  • Does not pollute the planet or damage the environment;
  • Is sourced, manufactured, transported and recycled using renewable energy sources which are non-polluting; and
  • Meets the market criteria for performance and cost or the trade-off for environment friendliness is minimal.


  • SCJ set 5 year goal to achieve 34% improvement in raw materials score of products as measured by Greenlist™ process (by 2012)
wal mart s sustainable packaging principles
Wal-Mart’s Sustainable Packaging Principles


  • Reduce packaging across global supply chain by 5 percent by 2013 ($3.4 billion of savings)
  • “The primary goal of the Packaging Sustainable Value Network is to be packaging neutral by 2025, which means all packaging recovered or recycled at our stores and Clubs will be equal to the amount of packaging used by the products on our shelves.”
  • Also: 100% Renewable Energy, Zero Waste, Sustain Environment and Resources

Principles: “7 R’s”

  • Remove
  • Reduce
  • Reuse
  • Renew(able)
  • Recycle(able)
  • Revenue
  • Read

Image from “The Greening of Wal-Mart”

sustainable packaging alliance sustainable packaging principles
Sustainable Packaging Alliance -Sustainable Packaging Principles
  • 4 sustainability principles need to be met by packaging:
    • effective - provide social and economic benefits;
    • efficient - provide benefits by using materials, energy and water as efficiently as possible;
    • cyclic - be recoverable through industrial or natural systems; and
    • safe - non-polluting and non-toxic.
sustainable biomaterials collaborative
Sustainable Biomaterials Collaborative
  • They define a sustainable biomaterial as:
    • (1) sourced from sustainably grown and harvested cropland or forests,
    • (2) manufactured without hazardous inputs and impacts,
    • (3) healthy and safe for the environment during use, and
    • (4) designed to be reutilized at the end of their intended use such as via recycling or composting.
  • Core principles include:
    • Reduce the amount of material, product and packaging used;
    • Eliminate single-use products that can be neither recycled or composted;
    • Avoid fossil-fuel-based materials in favor of materials and products derived from renewable feedstocks;
    • Address sustainability across the life cycle of the material: the growing of the feedstock, manufacturing of the biomaterial and final product, using the product and reclaiming the material at the end of its original use;
    • Define sustainability to include issues of environment, health, and social and economic justice;
    • Design and use products that are reusable, recyclable or compostable;
  • Encourage agricultural systems that are sustainable for farmers, the environment, farm workers and communities;
  • Support small- to mid-sized family owned and operated farms;
  • Do not use genetically modified organisms in agricultural feedstock production;
  • Use chemicals that meet the 12 Principles of Green Chemistry
  • Avoid engineered nanomaterials and chemicals that have not been tested for environmental and public health effects across the lifecycle; and
  • Decentralize production and buy local to reduce the environmental footprint of production, transportation, and consumption.
we call it
“We call it

Plan A

because there is no Plan B.” – Marks & Spencer

A 5 year plan based on 100 Points

5 Pillars, each with a primary goal for 2012:

  • Climate Change - Become carbon neutral
  • Waste - Send no waste to landfill
  • Sustainable Raw Materials - Extend sustainable sourcing
  • Health - Help improve the lives of people in our supply chain
  • Fair Partner - Help customers and employees live a healthier life-style

Goals with Regard to Packaging

  • Reduce Use of Packaging by 25 %
  • Use materials from sustainable or recycled sources (cardboard, metal, glass and plastic)
  • Restrict range of materials to ones that are easy to recycle or compost (focus on PLA, PP, PET, PE
  • Print simple symbols on packaging
  • Reduce use of carrier beds by 33% and make all bags from recycled plastics
x towards sustainable packaging17
X Towards Sustainable Packaging

Origins of Sustainable Manufacturing: Sustainability

Sustainable Manufacturing

Sustainable Manufacturing Concepts & Examples

  • Principles of Sustainability  
  • Methods/Guidelines/Regulations       
  • Metrics/Indicators
  • Tools/ Software

Action-oriented Design Guidelines



Wal-Mart Package Modeling


IPEN Guidelines

Scorecards, Checklists & Criteria

Wal-Mart Scorecard


Analytical Methods

Lifecycle Analysis (Process, EIO LCA, Hybrid)

Footprints (Ecological, Carbon, Water)




Evaluative Regulations & Standards

European Commission

Extended Producer Responsibility

Environmental Product Declaration

Sustainable Product Standard



Management Tools

Strength Weakness Opportunities Threats Analysis (SWOT Analysis)

Environmental management system

Integrated chain management (ICM)

Design guidelines

Oriented around principles

Meant to be simple

Aided by decision-making tools

Often voluntary – used by private companies, gov and ngo



Often used to check progress

Hard to compare tradeoffs

Implicit assumptions

Innovative changes often not captured

Analytical tools

Company specific data, processes, assumptions etc.

Used to track improvement


Give direction or target for industry

Specific goal(s) (EOL, waste etc)

Top-down rather than bottom-up approach

We are collecting details on these any many other methodologies related to sustainable packaging to compare in spreadsheets.

design guidelines
Design Guidelines

Includes various design strategy sections:

  • Design sustainably
  • Design for transport
  • Design with environmental best practice
  • Design with fair labor and trade practices
  • Design with renewable virgin materials
  • Design for reuse
  • Design for recycling
  • Design for composting

SPC also provides:

  • The Essentials of Sustainable Packaging Curriculum
  • Packaging Design Library
  • Communications
  • Environmental Technical Briefs
wrap s guide to evolving packaging design
WRAP’s Guide to Evolving Packaging Design

Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP) runs programs to support UK government legislation and private initiatives.

Design Guidelines focus on waste reduction and material checklists, specifically:

Waste hierarchy is applied to packaging

The material checklist weighs pros and cons of each material

  • Future plans include aiming for specific goals beyond waste reduction, (incorporating measures of “carbon, recycled content, recyclability and behavioral change.”) [Five Winds International]
responsible packaging code of practice
Responsible Packaging Code of Practice

From the UK, 2nd ed. in 2003.

7 parameters:

  • Function of packaging through the supply chain
  • Honesty in presentation
  • Convenience in use
  • Instructions, guidance and information
  • Legal requirements
  • Health, safety and consumer protection
  • Environmental aspects
  • Innovation in materials and products (resource efficiency)
  • System considerations (packaging should improve sustainability of system and reduce was through system)
  • Space and weight efficiency (for transportation)
  • Re-use
  • Process waste (at all points in supply chain)
  • Best practice with materials (enable recovery)
  • Energy recovery and material recycling
  • Litter
s sustainable packaging scorecard
’s Sustainable Packaging Scorecard

Scorecard is based on the MERGE Tool template

A supplier’s score, whether for secondary, tertiary or primary packaging follows this formula:

15% based on carbon dioxide per ton of production (only material manufacturing emissions are measured)

15% based on material value

15% based on product-to- package ratio

15% based on cube utilization

10% based on transportation

10% based on recycled content

10% based on recovery value

5% based on renewable energy

5% based on innovation

scj greenlisttm packaging criteria
SCJ GreenlistTM Packaging Criteria

Rates raw materials on 8 criteria (focus on material, supplier practices and product EOL)

  • Packaging Minimization
  • Design for Recyclability
  • Design for Reusability
  • Sound Materials Selection
  • Increased Use of Post Consumer Recycled Content
  • Use of Renewable Resources
  • Selection of Printing Methods and Materials
  • Selection of Environmentally Conscious Supply Partners

Each of these criteria has additional metrics associated with different packaging materials (glass, paper, rigid plastic, metal).

Final score is made by averaging each criteria score (0-317)

Products are categorized on a “better,” “best” scale

Used to phase out materials, and will license to others

life cycle analysis
Life Cycle Analysis

Three scopes

  • Cradle to gate
  • Cradle to grave
  • Cradle to cradle

Three types

  • Process LCA (addresses environmental inputs and outputs)
  • EIO LCA (addresses economic inputs and outputs)
  • Hybrid

LCA moving into an open (Open LCA), more integrative (LEED) etc.

process lca vs
Process LCA vs. Hybrid LCA


Input-Output LCA


  • bottom-up approach
  • Focus on environmental impacts of individual components/products
  • detail-oriented


  • Does not include second order, only on-site data/processes
  • Identification of boundaries of analysis is more difficult for large organizations

Current best practice

Embeds process systems inside input-output tables

There is danger of double counting


  • top-down approach
  • able to use economic tables
  • sector-focused
  • large picture, grand scheme view


  • assumes price, output and carbon homogeneity for sectors
  • sectors can only be split up to examine so far
ecological footprints
Ecological Footprints

An ecological footprint is a measure of resource management/use which refers to the amount of global hectares* required to sustain the life/practices being examined. Global hectares are hectares with average global productivity.

The measure is calculated by comparing the biological resources available in a given region (accounting for its ability to create food and absorb waste using status quo technology and practices) to resource demands of an activity/population

Ecological Footprint Standards have been developed and adopted by the majority of users. Details of these standards are available at www.footprintstandards.org, which is managed by the Global Footprint Network.

Standards help to address calculation nuances, including conversions, measure of land/sea parcels, address nuclear power, varying data sources, import/export data and biodiversity etc.

Origin of the per capita ecological footprint (EF) (to highlight differences in lifestyles), carbon footprint (emphasizing the climate change trigger Co2), water footprint (water-centric metric)

Similar to a metric of a more complete life cycle analysis but for the conversion to global hectares.

Use with the Living Planet Index of biodiversity from the WWF, or a adaptation of the footprint like Lenzen & Murray’s calculation for Australia is suggested in order to compensate for the metric’s omissions.

carbon footprints
Carbon Footprints

A carbon footprint calculation measures the total amount of carbon dioxide emissions caused by the activity/instance being measured. This includes direct and indirect emissions.

Scope varies

“As commonly used today, for example, the term ‘carbon footprint’ often refers to the number of tonnes of carbon emitted by a given person or business during a year, or to the tonnes of carbon emitted in the manufacture and transport of a product. In Ecological Footprint accounts, the ‘carbon Footprint’ measures the amount of biological capacity, in global hectares, demanded by human emissions of fossil carbon dioxide.” - Global Footprint Standard

Others may address all GHG, only carbon, include/exclude CO, and reflect lifecycle of goods and services (Haven, 2007)

Measures differ

"weight" vs. "footprint“

Weight already used in calculations, therefore it does not require additional conversions to area measures

Emphasizes need for carbon “diets”

water footprint
Water Footprint

Calculations require determining three different water footprints:

blue water = surface water and ground water

green water = rainwater stored in the soil as soil moisture.

In the 2 above cases, the associated footprint is the volume of water that evaporated from the water type’s total.

The grey water footprint is the volume of polluted water that associates with the production of all goods and services for the individual or community.

“The water footprint of a nation is defined as the total volume of freshwater that is used to produce the goods and services consumed by the people of the nation. Since not all goods consumed in one particular country are produced in that country, the water footprint consists of two parts: use of domestic water resources and use of water outside the borders of the country.” - [Hoekstra, A.Y. 2007,p 36]

The concept was created to serve as an indicator of water use, as related to consumption. The calculation takes into account direct and indirect use and is calculated by volume evaporated/polluted in a period of time. It is related to the concept of virtual water, “defined as the volume of water required to produce a commodity or service.”

basf eco efficiency analysis tool
BASF Eco-efficiency Analysis Tool

A decision-making analytical tool which uses LCA standards

Notes economic , environmental and social metrics

6 environmental parameters:

Raw materials consumption

Energy consumption

Land use

Air and water emissions and disposal methods

Potential toxicity

Potential risks



european directive 94 62 ec on packaging and packaging waste
European Directive 94/62/EC on Packaging and Packaging Waste

Requires that systems to deal with used packaging must be created to meet % goals by weight. For example:

“by no later than 31 December 2008, between 55 and 80% by weight of packaging waste to be Recycled”

A target-setting process is repeated every five years to keep the goals up to date.

Focuses attention on:

Total amount of packaging recovered, recycled or incinerated

Packaging volume and weight

Minimize noxious and other hazardous substances and materials

Legal requirements for limits of cadmium, hexavalent chromium (chrome IV), lead and mercury



European Standards Institute (CEN) created 6 standards to help companies improve the environmental status of their packaging. Addressed: manufacturing, composition reuse, recycling, energy recovery, composting, and the application of the management systems approach.

common elements
Common Elements

Only a few organizations worked to create principles, methods and metrics meant to support a coordinated vision

Social indicators of sustainability were largely ignored

Ability to provide guidance and educate at the same time, in a time effective manner was lacking

Wide audiences made targeted guidance (whether for consumers, or on material use for designers etc.) rare

There was a lack of procedural guidance for action and decision making, rather than high-level suggestions on examining the entire product system.

Different regulatory traditions influence effectiveness

Information gathered by relevant agents is not always freely available

Striking the balance between promoting change, facilitating change, and measuring change had not been reached

Methodologies included a collection of important metrics/indicators

Large investments in time and upkeep are required

Varying levels of academic rigor

The methods were created by varied stakeholders and often for multiple audiences

Multiple parts of the lifecycle were addressed, if not all

x towards sustainable packaging32
X Towards Sustainable Packaging

Origins of Sustainable Manufacturing: Sustainability

Sustainable Manufacturing

Sustainable Manufacturing Concepts & Examples

  • Principles of Sustainability        
  • Methods/Guidelines/Regulations 
  • Metrics/Indicators
  • Tools/ Software  
metrics indicators

We are currently working on populating an excel spreadsheet with a collection of indicators and metrics used by packaging manufactures in their methods, or considered important by relevant stakeholders.


  • Data to information
  • Inferences from quantitative analysis

In this report an indicator is a qualitative value which can be assigned different metrics and a metric can be calculated in different ways

sustainablemeasures.com notes 4 ways to organize indicators:

  • Category or issue lists – easy to comprehend
  • Goal/indicator matrix – emphasis comprehensiveness
  • Driving force-state-response tables – emphasis on impact
  • Endowments, liabilities, current results, and processes table categories- emphasis on longer term

Issues with measures – much depends on use

  • How variables are weighted or optimized,
  • Picking the right number to use can be difficult
  • Openness and transparency increases credibility
sustainable metrics project
Sustainable Metrics Project

Recently launched

Developing a core set of performance indicators to measure the sustainability of packaging and packaging systems.

Will publish after feedback from SPC members

collections of metrics
Collections of Metrics

Currently we are working to compare collections of metrics on an excel spreadsheet. Some of our sources include:


  • UN
  • UN Indicators of Sustainable Development


  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA’s) Science Advisory Board


  • Cradle to Cradle Certification Matrix
  • Global Reporting Initiative
  • Living Planet Report
  • Global Footprint
  • Redefining Progress


  • Metrics from the Wal-mart Scorecard
  • SCJ GreenlistTM Packaging Criteria for Specific Materials
  • MERGE Metrics
x towards sustainable packaging36
X Towards Sustainable Packaging

Origins of Sustainable Manufacturing: Sustainability

Sustainable Manufacturing

Sustainable Manufacturing Concepts & Examples

  • Principles of Sustainability        
  • Methods/Guidelines/Regulations       
  • Metrics/Indicators
  • Tools/ Software
tools software
Tools/ Software

There are many tools and software available. We are working on collecting a list and characterizing those that exist. For example:


  • Asbey
  • The Environmental Impact Estimator - by the ATHENA™ Sustainable Materials Institute.
  • BEES 3.0 - by National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) Building and Fire Research Laboratory.
  • CMLCA - by Centre of Environmental Science (CML) - Leiden University..
  • Sustainable Packaging Coalition- COMPASS –*Coming Soon*
  • Eco-Indicator 99 - by PRé Consultants.
  • ECO-it 1.3 - by PRé Consultants.
  • EcoScan 3.0 - by TNO Industrial Technology.
  • Economic Input-Output Life Cycle Assessment - by Green Design Initiative of Carnegie Mellon.
  • EDIP PC-tool (http://www.mst.dk/activi/08030000.htm) - by Danish EPA.
  • The Environmental Impact Estimator - by the ATHENA™ Sustainable Materials Institute.
  • EPS 2000 Design System - by Assess Ecostrategy Scandinavia AB.
  • GaBi 4 Software System and Databases - by PE Europe GmbH and IKP University of Stuttgart.
  • GEMIS (Global Emission Model for Integrated Systems) - by Öko-Institut.
  • GREET Model- The U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Transportation
  • IVAM LCA Data 4.0 - by IVAM.
  • KCL-ECO 4.0 - by KCL.
  • LCAiT 4 - by CIT Ekologik.
  • LCAPIX - by KM Limited.
  • MIET 3.0 - Missing Inventory Estimation Tool - by Centre of Environmental Science (CML).
  • REGIS - by Sinum.
  • SimaPro 7 - by PRé Consultants.
  • SPOLD Data Exchange Software - by The Society for Promotion of Life-cycle Assessment.
  • TEAM™ - by Pricewaterhouse Coopers Ecobilan Group.
  • Umberto - by Institute for Environmental Informatics, Hamburg.
  • WISARD™ - by Pricewaterhourse Coopers Ecobilan Group.


  • The Association of Plastics Manufacturers in Europe (APME)
  • The Boustead Model 5.0 - by Boustead Consulting.
  • The ecoinvent Centre - The Swiss Centre for Life Cycle Inventories central database of LCI data and life cycle impact assessment (LCIA) methods data.
  • IDEMAT 2005 - by Delft University of Technology.
  • Life-Cycle Inventory Database - by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.
  • SPINE@CPM - by CPM -
xi closing
XI Closing
  • Summary: Themes
  • Packaging Needs and Challenges
  • Next Steps
  • Conclusion
summary themes
Summary: Themes

The influence of qualitative principles can be directly and indirectly seen through design guidelines, analytical methodologies, and regulations.

Methods can address economic, environmental or equity concerns, with unique scopes and emphasis

  • Approaches, users, and lifecycle stages covered are varied

Tools are numerous and for as many purposes and audiences as there are methods

There is no one solution

Identification of goals, scope, audience is crucial to developing benchmarks and quantitative indicators

Necessities are not often distinguished from best practices

final thought complex tradeoffs
Final Thought: Complex Tradeoffs

“Would a carbon label on every product help us?” he asked. “I wonder. You can feel very good about the organic potatoes you buy from a farm near your home, but half the emissions—and half the footprint—from those potatoes could come from the energy you use to cook them. If you leave the lid off, boil them at a high heat, and then mash your potatoes, from a carbon standpoint you might as well drive to McDonald’s and spend your money buying an order of French fries.”

-Murlis, quoted in an article by M. Specter , “Big Foot.” The New Yorker. February 25, 2008

next steps
Next Steps

Join SPC, speak to them about overlapping work

Flesh out basic information with multitude of sources (already obtained)

  • Biopolymers, metrics associated with methods etc.
  • Details of LCA, footprint calculations etc.
  • Integrate critiques of methods explored

Visually illustrate connections from principles to methods and methods to metrics

Continue to analyze information we have collected with regard to trends and needs.

Continue to collect information on methods and associated metrics.

Build up excel spreadsheets to better visualize and compare importance of varied indicators.

Tease necessities from best practices


The packaging industry is not sustainable

Motivating factors for packaging manufacturing changes include

  • Regulatory Mandates (stick)
  • Economic Advantage (carrot)

Change is hindered by a vague regulatory environment, lack of informed customers and missing infrastructure

Qualitative guidelines exists, but concrete quantitative guiding measures, optimized for sustainable packaging, are needed

Further detailed analysis is needed to correlate qualitative concepts with quantitative metrics and parse best practices from necessities

xii more resources
XII More Resources

About SPS

Academic Departments

Academic Journals


Industry Actors, Publications & Forums

National Government Organizations


In progress Bibliography at http://packagingproject.wordpress.com/


about sps
About SPS
  • The Sustainable Products and Solutions (SPS) program is centered at the Center for Responsible Business at UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business, in partnership with UC Berkeley's College of Chemistry. Initial financing for SPS was provided with a five year $10 million contribution from the Dow Chemical Co. Foundation. This project hopes to achieve the aims of the SPS program in the area of packaging including:
    • Reducing and measuring the carbon footprint of packaging,
    • Production of bio-based materials and feedstocks for plastics,
    • Sustainable market-based solutions for packaging,
    • Measuring the lifecycle environmental footprints across a supply chain,
    • Decreased emissions (air, water & land) and non-useful by-products,
    • Public Policy implications of “sustainable solutions” for packaging

More details can be found at

    • http://www.haas.berkeley.edu/responsiblebusiness/SPSProgram.htm

Principals: D. Dornfeld (ME), PI, M. Taylor (GSPP) Berkeley, J. Greene (ME) CSU-Chico (Contact Person: D. Dornfeld, dornfeld@berkeley.edu)

  • Industrial Partner: Roplast Industries, Oroville CA
  • Collaborator: California Film Extruders and Converters Association (CFECA)
academic departments
Academic Departments
  • California Polytechnic State University
  • Clemson University www.clemson.edu/pkgsci
  • Fashion Institute of Technology www.fitnyc.edu
  • Indiana State University www.indstate.edu/imt/bs_pt.htm
  • Michigan State University School of Packaging www.packaging.msu.edu
  • Rochester Institute of Technology www.rit.edu/%7E719www/PROGRAMS/BS?ps.htm
  • San Jose State University www.engr.sjsu.edu
  • School for Military Packaging Technology www.smpt.apg.army.mil
  • University of California - Berkeley
  • University of Florida www.ifas.ufl.edu
  • University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign www.fshn.uluc.edu
  • University of Missouri-Rolla www.umr.edu
  • University of Wisconsin-Stout www.uwstout.edu/programs/bsp
  • Virginia Tech www.fst.vt.edu
  • Western Michigan University www.wmich.edu/pci/programs/papr_description.htm
academic journals
Journal of Manufacturing Science and Engineering

Journal of Packaging Technology and Science

Journal of Sustainable Product Design

The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment http://www.scientificjournals.com/sj/lca

European Platform on Life Cycle Assessment http://lca.jrc.ec.europa.eu/

Ecoinvent – Swiss Center For life cycle inventories http://www.ecoinvent.ch/

Journal of Cleaner Production?

International Journal of Environmental Technology and Management

Australasian Bioplastics Association (ABA



Journal of sustainable product design

Environmental Impact Assessment Review

Management of Environmental Quality

The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment

Journal of Cleaner Production

Journal of Industrial Ecology

Academic Journals


  • Natureworks LLC http://www.innovationtakesroot.com/
  • Nutec: Nutrients - Upcycling - Triple Topline - Effectiveness - Community http://www.nutec.de/
  • European Bioplastics Conference www.european-bioplastics.org
  • Sustainable Packaging Essentials http://www.sustainablepackaging.org/essentials/
  • Sustainable Packaging Forum www.packstrat.com
  • (Past) Developing Sustainable Approaches to Design-Make-Serve Cambridge, UK
industry publications forums
Industry Publications & Forums
  • Adhesive & Sealent Council
  • Pressure Sensitive Tape Council www.pstc.org
  • Biodegradable Products Institute
  • Textile Bag manufactures association
  • Glass Packaging Institute www.gpi.org
  • Glass Products Institute
  • Glass Technology Services (GTS): www.glass-ts.com
  • British Plastics Federation (BPF): www.bpf.co.uk
  • Packaging and Label Gravure Association www.plga.com
  • Printing Industries of America, INC www.gain.net
  • Private Label Manufactures Association www.plma.ocom
  • The Vinyl Institute www.vinylinfo.org
  • Aluminum
  • Aluminum Association www.aluminum.org
  • Aluminum Foil Container Manufacturers Association afcma.org
  • Can Manufacturers Institute
  • Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries, Inc. www.isri.org
  • Metal Packaging Manufacturers Association (MPMA): www.mpma.org.uk
  • Steel Recycling Institute www.recylce-steel.org
  • Aseptic Packaging Council www.aseptic.org
  • http://www.packaging-gateway.com/
  • Flexible Packaging Association
  • The Packaging Federation: www.packagingfedn.co.uk
  • The Packaging Solutions Advice Group (PSAG): www.psag.co.uk
  • Pro-Carton UK: www.procartonuk.com
  • Processing & Packaging Machinery Association (PPMA): www.ppma.co.uk
  • Institute of Grocery Distribution (IGD): www.igd.com
  • Institute of Packaging (IoP): www.pi2.org.uk
  • Institute of Packaging Professionals www.lopp.org
  • International Beverage Packaging association www.ibpa.org
  • European Carton Makers Association (ECMA): www.ecma.org
  • Industry Council for Packaging in the Environment (INCPEN): www.incpen.org
  • Liquid Food Carton Manufacturers Association (LFCMA): www.drinkscartons.com
  • Northa American Packaging Association www.paperbox.org
  • National Recycling Coalition www.nrc-recycle.org
  • National Resource Recovery Association www.nrra.net
  • National Association of Suppliers of Printing/Publishing Technology
  • Packaging and Industrial Films Association (PIFA): www.pifa.co.uk
  • Packaging Machinery Manufacturers Institute www.pmmi.org
  • Produce Marketing Association www.pma.com
  • Retail Packaging Manufacturers Association
  • World Packaging Organization www.world packaign.org
  • American Chemistry Council
  • Association of Postconsumer Plastic Recyclers www.american chemistry.com/plastics
  • Center for Plastic Recycling research
  • Film and Bag Federation wwww.plasticsindustry.org
  • Rigid Plastic Packaging Group
  • Society of Plastics
  • Society of the Plastics Industry www.plasticsindustry.org
  • National Association for PET Container Resources www.napor.com
  • National Association of Container Distributors www.nacd.net
  • Plastic Shipping Container Institute www.pscionline.org
  • Plastics Foodservice Packaging Group www.polystyrene.org
  • Society of the Plastics Industries www.socplas.org
  • Society of Plastics Engineers www. 4spe.org
  • FOAM
  • Alliance of Foam packaging Recyclers www.epspackaging.org
  • Solid waste Association of North America www.swana.org
  • Closure Manufacturers Association www.closuremanufactuers.org
  • The Tube Council www.tube.org
  • Composite Can & Tube Institute
  • Consumer Products Manufactures Association www.cpma-global.org
  • Contract Packaging Association www.contractpackaging.org
  • Design Management Institute www.dmi.org
  • Environmental Industry Association www.envasns.org
  • Flexible Intermediate Bulk Container Association www.fibca.com
  • Flexible Packaging Association www.flexpack.org
  • Food Marketing Institute www.fmi.org
  • Food Processing Suppliers Association
  • Foodservice & Packaging Institute
  • Gravure Association of America www.gaa.org
  • Grocery Manufacturers of America www.gmabrands.com
  • International Safe Transit Association www.ista.org
  • Keep America Beautiful www.kab.org
  • Fibre Box Association www.fibrebox.org
  • Forest Products Society www. Forestprod.org
  • Association of Independent Corrugated Converters www.aiccbox.org
  • American Forest and Paper Association
  • Boxboard Research & Development Association
  • Confederation of Paper Industries (CPI): www.recycledpaper.org.uk
  • Fibre Box Association
  • International Molded Fibre Association
  • National Wooden Pallet & Container Association
  • Paper Recycling Coalition
  • Paperboard Packaging Council
  • Recycled Paperboard Alliance
  • Recycled Paperboard Technical Association
  • Reusable Pallet and Container Coalition
  • TAPPI – Technical Association of the Pulp & Paper Industry
  • Tag & Label Manufacturers Institute Inc. www. Tlmi.com
  • National Wooden Pallet & Container Association www.palletcentral.com
national government organizations
National Government Organizations
  • U.S. Business Council for Sustainable Development
  • CA Integrated Waste Management Board Robert Carlson
  • EPA – Office of Solid Waste
  • Department of Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA) www.defra.gov.uk
  • Container Recycling Institute
  • Environmental Defense
  • Green Blue
  • Green Peace
  • IERE
  • Keep America Beautiful
  • National Recycling Coalition
  • Rocky Mountain Institute
  • The Design Council www.design-council.org.uk
  • Envirowise: www.envirowise.org.uk
  • Forest Stewardship Council (FSC): www.fsc.org
  • Forum for the Future: www.forumforthefuture.org.uk
  • London remade / Closed Loop London: www.londonremade.com
mathematically modeling multi objective optimization
Mathematically Modeling Multi-Objective Optimization
  • Once the pertinent input and output factors of sustainable packaging production have been identified, decisions must be made in the presence of possibly conflicting objectives. For instance, smaller, more easily palletizable products may be achieved with increased manufacturing (and hence higher energy use). In addition, producers will continue to have other performance objectives which they seek to maximize when incorporating sustainable objectives.
  • The solution to such problems often results in multiple possibilities (i.e. a set, known as Pareto points) of optimal choices. This is because improvements in one objective occurs at a trade off with the worsening of another objective.
  • Solving the multiobjective problem is almost always done by combining the multiple objectives into one scalar objective function. A well-known combination is the weighted linear sum of the objectives. One specifies scalar weights for each objective to be optimized, and then combines them into a single function that can be solved by any single-objective optimizer (such as SQP, pattern search etc.)
  • Should inputs like electricity, fossil fuels, water and post consumer materials, and outputs like scrap, solid waste, litter, carbon dioxide, methane, heavy metals, and volatile organic compounds be tracked
non sustainability factors of packaging of importance to manufacturers consumers
Non-Sustainability factors of packaging of importance to manufacturers & consumers
  • Price
  • Barrier protection:
    • Toughness
    • Tensile strength
    • Thickness
    • Seal-ability
  • Permeability (oxygen can cause changes in product color, odor and taste; and nutrient loss, product rancidity and microbial spoilage)
  • Surface friction
  • Shrink-ability
  • Aesthetics: color, transparency, & clarity