Reducing Environmental Impact and Increasing Reliability through Packaging: A Lifecycle Assessment Approach
Braintree, MA (Vocus) October 26, 2010
For many reasons and for many years, Liberty Packaging Co., Inc., with its versatile Intercept Technology™ packaging line, has been trumpeting the need for “smart packaging” use. These efforts are supported by a newly-released Alcatel-Lucent Bell Laboratories technical white paper, entitled: “Reducing Environmental Impact and Increasing Reliability through Packaging: A Lifecycle Assessment Approach”.
The Bell Labs scientists and authors of "Reducing Environment Impact and Increasing Reliability through Packaging", John P. Franey, Thomas A. Okrasinski, and William J. Shaeffer, Sr., analyze and quantify the importance of choosing the correct packaging material. As stated in the paper: “by using a synergistic approach for the primary packaging of products, improvements in the critical trio of reliability, environment, and cost of goods sold can be achieved.” Now companies can have reliability help from packaging and be environmentally conscientious; there need no longer be a trade-off.
In the past, manufacturers may have packaged their products with the minimum amount of atmospheric protection; they simply needed their products to arrive “looking good”. This packaging approach does not address the challenges of achieving optimum product performance.
At the other extreme, businesses may have followed the military specified way of packaging, creating layers of packaging materials, sometimes including oils, to get the job done. These methods created potentially large environmental impact due to non-recyclable aspects of the materials, and did not always afford the protection or the ability to be re-opened or inspected at customs. These are key issues to be overcome by today's packaging professionals, who must ship and store globally.
In fairness, manufacturers may have been unaware of better packaging solutions to combat rust, corrosion, fungus, and electrostatic discharge problems. To paraphrase a portion of the Bell Labs analysis, today’s larger “cost of goods” concern should include the reliability of products traveling to or being manufactured in harsh climates. This study shows that the manufacturing process to replace defective products is a major cause of greenhouse gas.
Intercept Technology packaging allows the packaging professional a material that reduces unnecessary trash, while helping their product achieve ultimate performance. Your packaging professional, charged with finding the best system for your product in which to ship and store, has become increasingly more vital. The Bell Labs paper reinforces the notion not only to build the product correctly at the outset, but also to protect it the most efficient way from the start.