Plastic shipping packages are a significant fraction of the world’s plastic problem. Some companies, like Amazon, have said they’ll try to switch to more affordable and eco-friendly alternatives. Other businesses seem utterly unaware of the money they’re losing and the impact they’re having on the environment.
“This clothing company always ships their freight in two inches thick of plastic wrap,” said this fed-up Redditor.
The attached photo showed a shipping pallet in a warehouse in the process of being unwrapped. A pile of wadded plastic beside the pallet was clearly enough to cover it dozens of times over — and there was still more around the merchandise. None of the other pallets in the background had nearly as much packing material wrapped around them.
“It’s so much!” the Redditor complained. “We get two to five shipments a week like this.”
Wrapping pallets this way just doesn’t make financial sense. It takes longer to both wrap and unwrap, wasting employee time that both companies have to pay for — not to mention the cost of the material itself.
Also, as Greenpeace recently pointed out, plastic recycling is difficult, and most plastic never gets recycled. Instead, plastic trash either ends up in landfills or as litter in the environment, including in the ocean, where it is dangerous to wildlife. The best way to prevent that outcome is to minimize the use of disposable plastic to start with.
“There are alternatives that exist. You can have safety without plastic,” said one commenter, sharing a link to a how-to page listing eco-friendly options. “Also, it took me like two seconds to find these alternatives.”
Even a small improvement would be better than nothing, as another user pointed out. “My dad made an arrangement with his local post office for their plastic wrap,” they said. “This stuff is excellent for packing material. Sure beats having to buy packing materials. Does it get tossed by the buyer? Sure, but it’s being reused once, at least, and not immediately discarded by the post office.”
Join our free newsletter for cool news and actionable info that makes it easy to help yourself while helping the planet.