Reduce, Reuse, Recycle & Compost
The volume, variety and redundancy of current packaging, due in part to food and drug regulations, though partly on branding efforts, has crippled our society’s ability to manage waste streams. Americans generate nearly 5 lbs. of waste per day on average. And while many conscious consumers may participate in separate or single stream recycling programs locally, the feasibility of actual recycling was severely hampered in 2018 when China stopped receiving these materials.
As a result, the places we live and other open spaces are increasingly burdened by at best piles of useless materials – at worst hazardous and life threatening habitats. Suncrafted and its parent Holistic Health Group (“Suncrafted”) are therefore working with packaging companies and regulatory agencies to mitigate the effects of its operational and distribution activities on the world around us. The brand and company respectively aspire to become a leader in sustainable cannabis packaging, and perhaps in consumer packaging more generally.
Priority Number One – Refillable Cannabis Containers
Suncrafted has drafted standard operating procedures for the use of reusable cannabis containers in its dispensary. Secure and rigid containers can be used for this purpose, which would all but eliminate the need for nearly all post-consumer waste in a cannabis sales transaction beyond a paper label. Beyond safety, the company has proposed various options to ensure product and container cleanliness and sterility continue. Follow the company’s social media accounts to learn how and when these initiatives may come to fruition.
Reduction Measures Save Resources
The Holistic Health Group’s Green Label products represent packaging for its initial product line for first run operations while the HHG One sustainable facility comes online. Working closely with its packaging partners, operations identified several opportunities to reduce the presence and volume of waste, including:
- Strive to reduce overall packaging weight to mitigate shipping fuel consumption.
- Employ PET plastic packaging (highest recycle rate) where necessary to ensure product integrity.
- Feature all labeling can be disposed by biodegradable secondary packaging.
- Conduct decision-making understanding landfills will be final destination for most materials.
Reusable Cannabis Packaging
Suncrafted has explored using reusable packaging solutions designed where its consumers may return more complex packaging like concentrate jars and concentrates to its sales locations. While certain other operators have incorporated these programs, the company hasn’t yet located a partner to ensure a sustainable final destination i.e. non-landfill.
Exit Strategy – A Better Carryout Bag
Because cannabis is highly regulated (compared to say, alcohol), state and federal regulations require that all material be purchased within child resistant packaging. Whenever the end user package does not contain these child safety features, the dispensary will need to provide these product within a child proof “exit bag” at the point of sale. Suncrafted in response incorporates CR functions to all of its end user packaging, and requires the same of its partners. In so doing, Suncrafted dispensaries can provide its patients and customers with exit bags comprised entirely of compostable materials without the need for child resistant (usually plastic) elements.