Ecology

How do we package our natural products?

 

We firmly believe that an eco-friendly approach is paramount to our future success. But we still cannot stop using packaging. What are we doing to make it as environmentally friendly as possible?

 

Text: Darja Kozlova
Artwork: Stan Hema

Protecting products … Avoiding waste.

In creating the formulations for Dr. Hauschka Skin Care products, we draw on the many elements that nature has to offer. We invest huge amounts worldwide in the organic and Demeter farming of our raw materials and the manufacture of our products. We have to make sure that unsuitable packaging does not cause the valuable content to go off prematurely and end up being wasted. After all, product protection is key to resource protection – and therefore also to environmental protection. In addition, our 100% authentic natural cosmetics do not contain any synthetic preservatives. This makes preserving the product’s shelf life and freshness the packaging’s most important task. Every time we develop a new product, we check which kind of packaging is most ecologically friendly while still providing full product protection. We also strive to reduce material usage along the entire process chain, from the design stage through the development stage, to delivery and disposal.

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"Product protection is key to resource protection – and therefore also to environmental protection."

Bioplastics – a blessing or a curse?

Bioplastics far from offer everything their name promises. Often bioplastics made from renewable raw materials are no more sustainable than plastics made from mineral oil. Criticism is often raised in relation to cultivation, which can be linked to the use of pesticides and fertiliser, as well as the use of genetically modified plants and the competition for arable or woodland areas. Bioplastics are only a consideration for us if they are demonstrably more environmentally friendly than conventional plastics. At the moment, we do not use any biodegradable bioplastics either. If they are not properly disposed of, they can simply add to the micro-plastic problem as many countries do not yet have suitable recycling systems for them. Despite this, we are keeping a close eye on how things are developing.

 

Increasing the recycled content.

The resources for manufacturing glass, aluminium and conventional plastic are not infinite. We are therefore very careful to ensure that materials can be reused. For this to be possible, they must enter the recycling cycle in as pure a form as possible. Only then can they be used to create new, high-quality packaging. By using waste paper or post-consumer recycled plastics, we reduce the need for raw materials and actively protect the environment. This is because recycling reduces the energy-intensive and polluting processes of sourcing and producing raw materials.

 

Plastic: better than its reputation.

The manufacturing of plastic has less of an environmental impact than that of either glas and aluminium. As such, we do not want to rigorously demonise this material. Plastic is furthermore light, non-breakable and extremely durable, plus it can be shaped and therefore used in many different ways. We primarily use PE and PP, which are energy-efficient and easily recyclable plastics. Where possible, we use plastic with a recycled content of up to 97%. Furthermore, our plastic packaging does not contain any plasticisers such as phthalates, BPA or similarly problematic additives.