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Custom Paper Boxes: Can good design be sustainable?

DATE: Apr 14th, 2023
For product packaging, sustainability means companies combine sustainability goals with business considerations and implementation strategies to address social aspects and environmental issues associated with product packaging.

What Is ESG Strategies

Environment, Society and Governance, often referred to as ESG strategies, included as a key point of growth for many companies, as consumers and investors become increasingly eco-conscious.

Based on global changes, the increasing demand for environmentally friendly actions, the rapidly growing demand for sustainable packaging from e-commerce companies, and the need for companies to achieve a win-win situation in terms of economic profitability and sustainability goals, it is safe to say that the development of more environmentally friendly, recyclable and sustainable packaging materials will be a major trend in the packaging industry in the near future.


Great Design vs Sustainability

We forget that great design matters, not only in how we shape our planet but in determining our impact on it. However, pinning sustainability entirely on ‘good design’ is unfair. Traditionally, client briefs have focused on consumer needs or technical specifications. Sustainability still feels like a ‘nice-to-have’. Things are starting to change but there’s a long way to go. In the meantime, sustainability is becoming intrinsic to consumers’ purchasing decisions. Who can afford to risk getting left behind?

Designer Has Responsibility to Change

Consumer behavior is changing dramatically, demanding an environmentally conscious attitude from brands. As packaging designers, we have a responsibility to the planet and our clients – helping them make sustainable choices to keep their consumers loyal. What makes a piece of packaging ‘good’ has changed. Is it still relevant to ask: does it work functionally? Does it emotionally connect with the consumer? But it’s definitely our duty to add to the list: “is it as sustainable as it could be?”.

Worked with Sustainability

To paraphrase Phillippe, “designers should be agents of good”. By its very nature, design and design thinking is about creative problem solving, enhancement, and making things better. Sustainability has to be a brand-led initiative. It needs to start with the brief and be at the heart of everything we do, not an afterthought or isolated to packaging. Through design and creativity there’s an amazing opportunity to shift towards more sustainable propositions, to help us all live a more sustainable lifestyle.

Together to the Future

‘Good design’ does not necessarily mean sustainable, but sustainably designed things are clearly good. Design is not responsible for sustainability, but it can respond to sustainability issues and tricky briefs that require smart approaches. Sustainability, whilst the hot topic, requires time to be shaped and integrated into companies. This will define the successful challenger brands of the future – those born with sustainable design thinking at their core.


TianXiang Packaging x Sustainability

Sometimes things that sound wrong at first are in fact dramatically true in the big picture.

Take product packaging. It may not sound like a tool for combating climate change or protecting biodiversity. But to achieve either one it is imperative for us to minimize waste: 3.2 billion tons of it, accounting for 14%-16% of total anthropogenic GHG emissions.

And it is not just about getting rid of wasting water, resources and energy. Our need for farmland is putting a squeeze on nature’s own habitats and biodiversity. Just seven agricultural commodities accounted for 26% of global tree cover loss between 2001 and 2015, an area of land more than twice the size of Germany.”

We are TianXiang Packaging and we believe packaging can protect product, people and the planet.

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