Why we needed a completely new solution
One of the biggest problems around the world when it comes to packaging is that it’s almost impossible to match the type of material used to the processes available to handle that material once it’s been used by the consumer.
In New Zealand, for example, there are no commercial facilities to deal with compostable packaging materials and the vast majority of accommodation providers don’t have the time or ability to recycle the large number of recyclable plastic bottles that go through their businesses. Even when plastics are recycled properly by the user, because of the country’s poor record in setting up recycling systems, there’s still a fair chance they will fall through the cracks and end up with general waste.
This means that most packaging – regardless of whether it’s marked as recyclable, degradable or compostable – ends up going to landfill.
Health Pak has long pushed the development of innovative recycled and recyclable packaging such as eco.logic bottles and processes such as the Back to Base soap recycling, but we also believe we now need a product that matches the reality of guests’ demands for high-quality cosmetic products that provide a great consumer experience with the reality of where those products end up.
Ecosticks will take less than
10 years to degrade
plastic bottles take between
How ecostick will reduce waste
Ecostick is unique in that it’s the only paper-based material that’s able to hold a liquid long-term without leakage. Other paper-based packaging either uses a plastic coating or foil as a sealant to prevent leaking, whereas ecostick’s material also contains an additive which allows the super thin plastic lining to break down in landfill within 3 to 10 years as opposed to the hundreds of years it would take otherwise.
There are three main components to how this works:
- The ecostick material: This is almost exclusively paper and so is able to biodegrade in any landfill. The thin layer of plastic coating that’s used wouldn’t degrade in landfill because of the lack of sunlight or oxygen, so our additive is designed to a) help start the process of breaking it down, and b) work like a pheromone for microbes which then start eating it as if it was organic waste.
- The packaging line: The way the material is handled and filled contributes to how it is able to contain liquids such as shampoo and soap without leakage.
- The cosmetic products: The liquids that go into the ecosticks are quality cosmetic products but with intellectual property characteristics that another shampoo wouldn’t have that allow them to go into a paper sachet and not leak.
replace over 16,000,000 bottles annually
Guest experience compared to bottles & tubes
Guests simply love the idea and the innovation behind it. Unlike dispenser systems, which are not well regarded by Kiwis and Australians, the ecostick is seen as new and clever.
Display and functionality were always going to be of the utmost importance in bringing a new packaging product to market. Ecosticks needs to have the wow-factor when it comes to providing guests with a great experience at their accommodation while also providing the environmental story of why it is important and different.
The result is to use a ceramic tube with a bamboo lid to contain and display the sticks in the bathroom and introduce a bamboo tray to contain the tube alongside the other products in the range.
The ceramic tube also carries information about how ecostick works as well as a QR code that directs to our new website onelessbottle.co.nz which explains why the accommodation provider is offering the product.