Packaging professionals within consumer packaged goods companies reported growing awareness of how natural resource scarcity impacts business, but robust knowledge and understanding is still absent, according to findings from a survey conducted recently by Tetra Pak U.S., Denton, TX.
In November, Tetra Pak surveyed 120 sales, marketing, R&D, purchasing and other packaging professionals within the consumer packaged goods industry to explore industry perceptions of company resource management practices, especially in light of diminishing finite natural resources, population growth and increased consumer demand for packaged goods.
The survey results aligned with recent findings from Packaging Digest’s annual survey of packaging and sustainability around use and expected growth of bio-based packaging materials.
Among Tetra Pak’s findings, just 41 percent of survey respondents said they were “very aware” of the impacts of resource scarcity on their business. And while respondents reported some awareness around eight attributes related to resource management practices within their companies, it was far from pervasive, with awareness levels of most attributes at 50 percent or less.
“The results of our survey suggest that more must be done to educate and increase attention around the impacts of natural resource scarcity,” says Brian Kennell, president and CEO. “This is a very real and significant issue for the packaging industry and beyond. Greater knowledge of the potential risks and deeper insights around solutions can spur companies to adopt risk-mitigations strategies and change their practices.”
Survey respondents reported three top impacts to companies:
- Greater price volatility around supply/raw materials
- Long-term shortage of supply resources
- Decreased ability to manage costs
Respondents also cited the following as the top reasons for using renewable materials:
- Sustainable resource management will contribute to growth
- Using renewable materials allows company to secure long-term supply
- I expect demand for renewable packaging to increase
- Using renewable resources can help mitigate climate change
Survey findings also revealed that respondents are uncertain if companies are doing the right things and following best practices. Only 18 percent of respondents reported being satisfied with their company’s resource management practices, and only 22 percent believed their company has a good understanding of actions to take to become an industry leader.
The survey is part of Tetra Pak’s Moving To The Front initiative to sharpen the focus on resource scarcity and its implications for the ongoing viability and business growth of consumer packaged goods companies. The initiative invites manufacturers, brand owners, nongovernmental organizations and others to expand attention from the mid- and end-of-life cycle to the beginning.
To learn more about Moving To The Front and to download Tetra Pak’s “How Is Resource Scarcity Impacting Businesses?” infographic, visit www.doingwhatsgood.us/moving-to-the-front/sub/embrace-renewability