It's safe to say the tide is turning on single-use plastic. After David Attenborough brought the world's attention to the impact of plastic pollution in Blue Planet II, businesses and individuals around the world are taking a hard look at their own use of plastic, including me...
Traditionally, greetings cards are packaged in cello sleeves to keep them clean and protect them from damage. But they are then simply thrown away and end up in a landfill. You may think a few cello sleeves is not a big deal, but when you think millions of cards are being sold this way around the world, that is a sh*t load of plastic ending up in the bin! As we first entered the industry, we too used cello sleeves, purely because it was the done thing and customers expected it right?
In September 2018, we heard about the Naked Cards movement on Instagram. The concept was simple, greeting card businesses were encouraged to simply send their cards naked; without the cello sleeve. Such a simple concept that would have a huge impact on the amount of plastic being used, and I was totally on board with giving it a go! After sending a few cards 'naked' I was pleasantly surprised that I had received no bad reviews or comments as to why or 'my card was damaged', and in-fact, it was quite the opposite. Customers commented that it was refreshing to see there was no plastic waste! And the rest they say is history. Other than a few older pre-packaged cards, all our cards are now sent plastic free. Hurrah!
Following on from going naked, I have looked at where else I can reduce my plastic waste. Our tote bags, historically sent in plastic mailing bags, are now sent in Lil Packaging's kraft paper mailing bags which are strong and water resistant.
Just like sending our cards naked, our pin badges, keyrings, coasters and magnets are also sent plastic free and simply popped in a paper bag and sealed with a branded sticker. Friendly and way more fun to open!
We are aware that by simply producing greetings cards, we are ultimately contributing to waste. To combat this, our cards are printed on FSC certified stock which means they are generated from well managed forests ensuring they are here for future generations. We are also encouraging the recipient of our cards to either keep the card to treasure for years to come, or to simply pop it in with their recycling with a 'recycle me or keep me' logo on the back of our cards.
There is still a long way to go but we are continuously looking at ways to reduce our plastic waste and we hope we can encourage others to do the same. If you are a small business selling greeting cards, why not try sending them naked? As they say, every little helps!
For more information about the Naked Cards campaign, check out their website - nakedcards.co.uk