Sustainable Packaging

By Greenhealth Staff on October 3, 2012

Johnson & Johnson

The company has developed a Global Environmental Packaging Reference Guide and Packaging Protocol to assist the Johnson & Johnson Family of Companies in efficient and effective packaging design. The company also works to reduce the weight of its packaging, decrease the energy used to make and transport packaging, and increase the post-consumer recycled (PCR), sustainable, and biodegradable materials used. Johnson & Johnson achieved its Healthy Planet goal in 2010 of ensuring that at least 75 percent of its paper-based packaging contained at least 30 percent PCR content or fiber from certified forests; in fact, by the end of 2010, 97 percent of paper-based packaging met these criteria. –Johnson & Johnson

Becton Dickinson

Becton Dickinson is working to reduce the materials in its product packaging and to find effective alternatives that are recyclable and reusable and that are not derived from fossil fuels. BD PosiFlush Packaging engineers have redesigned the BD PosiFlush packaging, which holds 30 prefilled syringes, and introduced recycled content into the materials. The new design resulted in a 25 percent reduction in overall packaging weight while maintaining all the existing benefits of the original packaging, including cleanliness, wipeability, and clear labeling. The company’s reusable Envirotainer also cuts waste. Certain bioscience products need to be transported at stable temperatures. These products were typically packed in single-use cooler boxes with frozen gel packs; however, the San Jose facility now uses the new reusable Envirotainer, which not only provides better insulation but also prevented 12,480 foam coolers and 100,000 gel packs from being sent to landfills in 2010. –Becton Dickinson

Beacon Converters

Beacon Converters develops medical devices for treating osteoarthritis and joint damage. It provides patient-specific surgical solutions, including special instrumentation that is supplied by the patient’s surgical team and shipped by Next Day Air carrier to the surgical site. Because of their product attributes, orthopedic medical devices are typically packaged in rigid thermoformed trays that have a large packaging footprint. The company’s new ConforMIS Drill and Pin Kit Wallet is 100 percent virgin HDPE and provides a flexible packaging alternative to the rigid trays; multiple tiers of heavy sharpened metal components are individually organized and secured within. The unique design minimizes the packaging footprint while protecting the components from abrading each other and from puncturing the pouch. The package addresses multiple environmental concerns when compared with a thermoformed tray solution, and the wallet reduces the volume of packaging components by more than 93 percent. –Beacon Converters

Boston Scientific Corporation

"Our sustainability program is a triple win—it’s good for the environment, our customers, and the bottom line, " says Leonard Sarapas, PE, PH, Corporate Director, Environment, Health & Safety at Boston Scientific Corporation. As a leading manufacturer of less invasive medical devices for treating gastrointestinal and pulmonary conditions, Boston Scientific is committed to providing innovative and quality products to improve patient care while remaining good stewards of the environment. "In some product families, Boston Scientific has reduced both its primary and secondary packaging size by 65 percent and the materials used in its packaging by 45 percent, " notes Sarapas. "Reducing the packaging size also reduces the transport impacts on the environment—you’re shipping less bulk and weight. " The reduced size is also important to a hospital’s operations in terms of storage, Sarapas explains. Improving patient care and safety while providing customers unmatched value and making sustainability a key focus, are among Boston Scientific’s priorities. —Boston Scientific Corportaion