Why is Cardboard Packaging Better than Plastic?

Choosing the right packaging is essential for the success of any product — it determines the product’s exterior, the product’s branding, and ultimately, the product’s success. It is one of the most consequential decisions a CEO/manager/owner can make about the product.

One of the paramount questions you’ll face when selecting the packaging for your product is going to be its type: will you choose plastic or cardboard packaging? Ultimately, this is going to determine the kind of packaging your product is going to get. In this article, we’ll go over some of the reasons why you should choose cardboard packaging over plastic packaging.

#1 More Environmentally Friendly

It is no secret that plastic has a heavy carbon footprint, and even the most environmentally-friendly, recyclable plastics out there are still orders of magnitude behind cardboard in terms of just how much environmentally friendly they are.

This is largely due to the manufacturing processes involved: cardboards are primarily made out of wood with very light processing. Cardboards are naturally biodegradable and don’t harm the environment if dumped.

Plastic, on the other hand, is derived from oil and its products, and the manufacturing process is heavy and requires a lot of energy. That’s why, unless bio-plastic is somehow developed, plastic is always going to be more environmentally harmful.

Recently, customers have started to pay far more attention to the environmental footprint of the products they use — not only that, but governments have also started taxing and regulating pollution due to all its negative externalities. Both of these reasons combined have made cardboards a far more attractive option in recent years. We see many major companies slowly change their packaging from plastic to cardboard.

#2 Less Expensive

As we mentioned above, plastic is made out of oil and its products, while cardboard is primarily made out of wood — due to the raw materials involved alone, we should expect plastic to be far more expensive.

This is doubly true in recent years as the bans on single-use plastic, the extra regulations, and the supply chain issues involving oil and other energy products have made plastic considerably more expensive.

All of this means one thing: if you care about price, especially going into the future, you should opt for cardboard instead of plastic.

#3 More Flexible

Although recent advances in plastic manufacturing have allowed us to create really flexible plastic, it is still well below cardboards in terms of flexibility — whether you want to imprint your brand, choose a specific size, or choose a particular colour, they’ll all be far easier and cheaper with cardboards.

Imprinting on plastic can be quite expensive, especially at scale. While on cardboards, you can present your brand however you want. This added flexibility is a massive advantage that your company wouldn’t want to forgo. And if you’re interested in high-class, environmentally friendly, inexpensive cardboard packaging, then you should definitely check out Art of Packaging.

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