Comment: Smart and sustainable: Can packaging be both?

How connected are sustainability and smart packaging, and what does the future hold for partnerships between these two fields? Andrew Manly, AIPIA’s communications director, looks into this in our latest comment piece.

Sustainability is a complex word, reflecting a very complex subject. Defining sustainability as a single concept is a bit like trying to explain smart packaging as a single technology. But while both are multi-faceted, whether or not they are compatible with each other has exercised the minds of packaging and sustainability experts for quite some time. So, let’s take a look.

For the record: When it comes to sustainable packaging, the term generally can mean ‘easier to recycle’, ‘made from renewable or compostable resources’, ‘using less resources’ and now includes a trend to ‘re-use’ rather than ‘recycle’. For smart packaging, the terminology falls into two general categories, ‘active’ and ‘intelligent/connected’...


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