The closed-cycle economy is characterized by the optimization of production processes, the efficient use of resources, the minimization of waste and the harmful impact on the environment. Ideally, it is a cyclical scheme “production – > consumption – > waste – > production”. Business models based on the basic principles of a closed-loop economy can strengthen the reputation of companies, increase the profitability of production and stop the degradation of ecosystems.
Scope of packaging
Plastic waste is recognized as the main environmental threat worldwide. Most of this waste comes from non-recyclable waste from once-used packaging that ends up in landfills. In total, about 30% of all packaging products are recyclable. There is an urgent need to regulate the packaging industry and move to a closed-loop economy in several stages:
- replacing single-use plastic packaging with reusable ones. For example, instead of cups for drinks, it is necessary to use individual thermal mugs;
- transition to raw materials that are recyclable or biodegradable. Already used packaging can become the material for a new packaging product, or decompose into components that do not harm the environment;
- modernization of existing production facilities that emit a large amount of carbon into the surrounding atmosphere and require significant energy resources.
The main obstacle to the closed-loop economy is the use of non-recyclable plastic in packaging. This material is cheap, light, and durable, so manufacturers still prefer it. However, the issue of the transition of the packaging industry to a closed-loop economy is being addressed in all developed countries and is supported at the state level. For example, in Finland, the use of plastics that are not recyclable is prohibited at the legislative level. In the EU countries, companies that sell goods in plastic packaging are required to participate in its processing. In the Russian market of packaging materials manufacturers, there are also companies that are concerned about environmental problems. NTL-Packaging has successfully started the production of biodegradable materials. By achieving a full production cycle, our company reduces the negative impact on the environment both during the manufacturing processes and after the disposal of the biodegradable material.
Compliance with the principles of the closed-cycle economy in the production of packaging contributes to the following benefits:
- economic. Taking care of environmental issues increases the competitiveness of companies in the market, while at the same time it is possible to reduce the cost of raw materials through recycling, creating a field for the development of innovative materials;
- environmental. Reducing the amount of waste that cannot be completely decomposed and modernizing production facilities maintain a balance in ecosystems.