Outdoor gear and clothing retailer REI has taken great steps in redesigning its packaging and reducing materials, like eliminating clamshell packaging from its product range. It is the company’s goal to reduce its REI-branded packaging 25% by 2013.
The man behind a lot of the packaging innovations is their engineering manager Eric Abraham. He has pushed for materials that are 100% recyclable and sourced from Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified materials. Now, product hangtags feature 100% post-consumer recycled content and their fasteners are made from recycled polypropylene instead of virgin plastic.
The company also now ships bicycles in boxes of four instead of individually, reducing associated waste. Also, bicycle tire tubes that used to be sold in a paperboard box are now packaged in a new tube holder designed by Abraham, which uses a plant-based film that reduces materials by 98% and is compostable.