Product Packaging News Recycled: Less Is Still More

In the past couple of weeks, two seemingly opposite articles about packaging have piqued my interest.

First it was this one from Fast Company: “Will ‘Active Packaging’ Undermine Apple’s Quest for Sustainability?”

Then it was this week’s Marketing: Green column from MediaPost: “When It Comes To Packaging, Less Is More.”

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360 Vodka Won Me Over With Eco Packaging And $10 Rebate

360 Vodka—eco-packaging, strong rebate and tastes great!

360 Vodka—eco-packaging, strong rebate and tastes great!

OK, I admit it: I like vodka. I’m also on a budget. In fact, I live my life on a budget. Nothing too extreme (though times are a little tougher than usual), but I do pay attention to what I spend. And while I like nice things, I realize that top-shelf items are not normally in my budget. Life is full of compromises.

For example, I like Ketel One. It’s smooth. But Smirnoff is a better fit for the budget, it’s totally drinkable, and the liquor store down at the Smith’s has it for a good price even when it’s not on sale.

But while in for a bottle recently I noticed some very “green” marketing on a boutique vodka I’ve eyed from time to time but never bought, and caved. The vodka is “360” and it bills itself as the “Eco Luxury Vodka.”

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Amazon Takes The Lead In Reducing Packaging Waste

Amazon to help How many times have you been completely frustrated with the ridiculous packaging that so many of the products we buy are entombed in? In a post I wrote back in March about a new Camelbak bladder I purchased, I praised the company for keeping their packaging simple and mostly recyclable. Its baffling to me that this should be a topic to blog so passionately about, but after opening packages of children’s toys for my daughters for the past six years worth of Christmases and Birthdays, this is a frustration that angers me to no end. What is all this crap and why do manufacturers believe they need to make opening packaging a task requiring the tools found in my workshop?

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Camelbak Packaging Satisfies Almost As Much As The Product

camelbak_1.jpgI bought a new Camelbak reservoir this week. The old one bit the dust after more than ten years of faithful service, and judging by the odd green tint, it was probably about time.

It wasn’t a big deal. I stopped by my local outdoor store, Wilson Backcountry Sports, where they had a sampling of Camelbak products in a highly visible area adjacent the cash register, and picked up a new 70 oz reservoir to replace the one that had accompanied me on countless backcountry trips, ski days, mountain bike rides, and other worldly travels, and had just recently failed. It was even reasonably priced: a little less than twenty-five bucks after Andy extended the good buddy deal.

Though I was saddened to have to replace such a faithfully utilitarian piece of equipment, serving me so well for so long, it wasn’t until I got it home and opened up the package that I realized what pleased me most about my new purchase.
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