MBE packed ready for dispatch in grass and straw

1 December 2022

Shipping service provider Mail Boxes Etc. (MBE) dispenses with plastic and offers only biodegradable and recycled packaging. Transported in a climate-neutral way, the packaging enables a 100 per cent sustainable shopping experience.

Grass paper instead of plastic film, straw sheets instead of cold packs and corn starch instead of Styrofoam: the MBE Centre in Garching near Munich offers a full range of organic packaging for all transport tasks. This includes hemp as a coolant as well as air cushions made of bio-film. The only conventional packaging is cardboard boxes made from recycled material. These cardboard boxes carry a seal of quality for renewed recycling. All of this packaging is used by regional traders to ship their products. This is also organised by the MBE Centre. A sustainability contract with UPS guarantees climate-neutral transport. Organic online retailers who want to offer their customers a 100 per cent sustainable shopping experience are the main beneficiaries of this overall package.

Almost all of the packaging at the MBE Centre Garching is compostable and is already significantly more energy-efficient in production than classic transport packaging. For example, the production of grass paper requires only two litres of water per tonne of pulp. In contrast, plastic shipping bags, so-called polybags, require 9,000 litres. This makes grass paper bags a much more sustainable option for transporting garments.

In terms of quality, retailers and consumers do not have to accept any compromises with organic packaging. This is evident, for example, in the use of cooling elements made of straw, which keep meat, fish and sausage fresh for 24 hours and would thus be ideal for the booming food box suppliers. Among others, an organic butcher who cooperates with the MBE Centre Garching relies on this rediscovered cooling method that was common a hundred years ago.

"When we changed our range of products to sustainable packaging, this also generated scepticism among our customers at first. In the meantime, our organic packaging is in great demand, precisely because it is also well received by end customers," says Carola Völkl, who manages the MBE Center Garching together with her husband Gregor. In the meantime, organic packaging is offered on request in many of the 150 Mail Boxes Etc. (MBE) centres across Germany.

Source: Packaging Journal