All packaging to become reusable or recyclable by 2025
Packaging plays an important role to protect and transport the products we buy. However, packaging that is unable to be recycled contributes to waste that is sent to landfill.
Every day, more and more innovative and sustainable packaging solutions are becoming available which give consumers a better experience by enabling them to easily recycle their packaging, avoiding the need for packaging waste to be sent to landfill.
With almost 40,000 products available for sale at Officeworks, it takes a holistic approach to reduce environmental impacts caused by product packaging by working with all its suppliers. The Officeworks Sustainable Packaging Policy outlines the expectations for its suppliers to follow, and product packaging reviews are integrated into the category range review process to identify packaging improvements. With over 6,400 own-brand products available, Officeworks’ initial priority is to ensure the packaging on those products is recyclable or reusable. As at 30 June 2021, 97 per cent of its own-brand products met this criteria.
During the year, Officeworks also continued to look at ways to reduce unnecessary plastic packaging and transition to plastic-free packaging where possible. By working with suppliers, it implemented solutions to avoid the annual equivalent of 6.7 million pieces of plastic, across both primary and secondary packaging. Additionally, Officeworks has achieved the milestone of removing polystyrene from all own-brand products and have begun working with national and international branded suppliers to do the same.
In 2016, Officeworks partnered with Planet Ark to develop the Australasian Recycling Label, which has been widely adopted on Officeworks’ own-brand products. The packaging recyclability assessment is integrated into how they source, design and review product packaging, with the label featuring on almost 5,000 of their own-brand products. This process helps Officeworks design more sustainable packaging, and the label helps its customers recycle correctly.
Officeworks is working to ensure the packaging on own-brand products will be recyclable by December 2021. It will continue to collaborate with all suppliers to encourage them to design packaging that is recyclable and implement further solutions to reduce the reliance on plastic packaging. Officeworks will continue to explore ways that packaging used for online deliveries can be optimised, reducing unnecessary materials, and exploring ways it can provide deliveries to stores and customers in reusable options.