According to the statistics of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, about 1.3 billion tons of food for human consumption are discarded or wasted before reaching the table every year in the world, which is equivalent to 1/3 of the total food production.
About 14 percent of food is lost in transit, 5 percent is thrown away from restaurants, and 2 percent is thrown away from retail outlets.
Dairy products, fruit and vegetables are among the products that require the most special care during transportation and distribution. And all food needs to be properly transported and stored, under strong protection and suitable temperature, in order to reach the destination smoothly. Otherwise, they become wasted 1/3.
The production and transportation of food requires vast resources such as water and energy. Wasted food accounts for as much as 10% of global greenhouse gas emissions. Wasting food is also a moral issue, considering that 690 million people around the world are starving.
If food waste can be reduced, only an appropriate amount of arable land and matching productivity can meet human needs for food and nutrition, and CO2 emissions during the production process will be reduced.
Food waste is an environmental, economic and ethical challenge, and proper packaging can help address these challenges.
Fiber-based packaging material could boost food safety
How to ensure the freshness and safety of food from the farm to the table, and improve the sustainability of the entire product chain, is the key for food brands to seek answers from packaging materials and packaging solutions.
Certain chemical substances in food packaging materials may migrate into food during contact with food. At the same time, unhygienic packaging materials may cause pathogenic microorganisms in food to exceed the standard, leading to food poisoning incidents. Packaging materials based on virgin high-quality fibers are also the most reassuring and secure. They are part of a sustainable product cycle, offering sustainable and safe options for a variety of uses.
In addition, a high-quality food packaging must be able to withstand changes in high heat, high humidity and different transportation environments. This is especially important for product shelf life and reducing food waste. Due to the recyclable properties of wood fiber packaging materials, choosing such packaging also becomes a responsible consumption choice.
The desire for a healthy lifestyle is a trend in today’s world. Consumers want to live in an eco-friendly way and are looking for solutions that have a low impact on the environment.
Chinese consumers generally believe that paper materials make them feel better than other materials. Comparing “paper material” and “plastic”, the eight elements of “environmental friendliness, ease of use, shape, safety, beauty, texture, gift, and high-end” are all better than plastic packaging.
Although not every consumer will definitely prefer environmentally friendly packaging, but at the moment of discarding the packaging, consumers’ awareness of environmental protection is soaring.  With the maturity of consumers’ awareness of environmental protection consumption, sustainable packaging will no longer be an option in the future, but essential.
The secret lies in the circular design of the packaging
Many international companies have pledged to replace plastic in their production and products in the future, or to use more recyclable packaging to reduce their carbon footprint.
Is the thicker the packaging the better? Not really. A high-quality packaging is not equal to excessive packaging. Proper size can make the use of less manufacturing materials and lighter weight, which will help reduce carbon dioxide emissions during transportation and reduce packaging costs. This resource efficiency is at the heart of any good packaging solution.
Cardboard packaging based on renewable wood fiber is easily recycled, making it more environmentally friendly than most other solutions. In Europe, more than 80% of fiber-based packaging is recycled.
Taking recyclability and circularity into account from the very beginning of product development will have more positive impacts on sustainability, the environment and society. As more renewable material food packaging is used, the problem of food waste will also find new inspiration to solve it. At the same time, food safety has been further guaranteed, consumers’ green consumption needs have been responded, and food brand owners’ green promises have been fulfilled.