By offering its delivery customers the option of receiving their order in paper bags, rather than cardboard boxes, Office Depot hopes to eliminate millions of pounds of paper waste.
During pilot testing of the GreenerOffice Delivery Service program, Office Depot found that a whopping 90 percent of eligible customers voluntarily opted into the program. Based on these test rates, the company estimates it will be able to replace approximately 4.5 million pounds of cardboard boxes with about 0.9 million pounds of paper in the first 12 months of the program, saving approximately 20,000 trees. Additionally, switching from boxes to bags will also eliminate the need for plastic air pillows, which are petroleum intensive and hard to recycle.
Customers that opt into the program will find their order delivered in paper bags that contain 40 percent post-consumer recycled content. The paper bags will be protected during transportation in reusable plastic totes, which also contain 60 percent post consumer recycled plastic, and will be taken back by drivers and reused for future deliveries (Environmental Leader).
“Office Depot’s material footprint from cardboard use is significant,” said Yalmaz Siddiqui, director of environmental strategy for Office Depot. “This program, championed very effectively by our Supply Chain team, delivers a triple win: our customers win because the paper bags are more convenient to open and recycle; Office Depot wins because we continue to enhance our environmental leadership; and the ecosystem benefits because fewer materials are needed, and less waste ends up in our landfills.”
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