Lean and green: effective ways to cut down on product packaging

As the cost of product packaging continues to rise, increasing numbers of small businesses are looking for ways to cut down on the amount they spend on product packaging. Reducing the amount of packaging you use is not only a great way to slash costs; it’s also an effective way to demonstrate your environmental credentials too.

Most businesses use a contract packing service to handle their product packaging and even if you have been using the same service for years, it’s possible to drive the cost down. A good place to start is by visiting a contract packing company in person and asking for information on any specialist services they might offer and by viewing their packaging production line ‘in action’ you’ll be able to carry out a first-hand inspection on the quality of their services. By watching how things are done, you’ll be better able to gauge the efficiency of the operation and if you’re not happy you should take your business elsewhere.

If you do decide to try a new contract packing service, it’s important to carry out an inspection of the production line and, if you’re happy, just offer them a few small jobs in the first instance.

Any contracting packaging company worth its salt should be able to offer suggestions on how you could cut the cost of your product packaging. A meeting to talk through and review the specifications of your packaging is essential and you should make sure that everyone who needs to be involved is at this meeting. It’s well worth asking whether the contract packers have worked with a similar type of packaging before, and if they have, do they have any suggestions on how costs can be cut? The contract packaging will want to help if they can because new business is always in their interests and they’ll be keen to foster a close working relationship with you.

Leaving your contract packing company out of the development stage of your product packaging can prove costly. An unnecessarily complex packaging design, could, for example result in an inefficient, expensive packing run. By working closely with them from the very start you could make significant savings on the cost of packaging your products and then end result is more likely to be well-designed and user-friendly.

Don’t forget to look at other ways to reduce the cost and size of your product packaging. Some brands are choosing to ‘concentrate’ their products which means less packaging is required whilst simply changing the shape of packaging can help you make big savings. Provided you’re prepared to think outside the box (no pun intended!) and regularly review the design of your product packaging, you could make significant, regular savings on your packaging costs.

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