Working to Reverse Plastic Dependency
How It Began
The last century has seen a major transformative swing from small family run companies and farms to large scale industry and corporate owned farmlands. Anything and everything that could be consolidated for companies to gain market share and control became all the rage in the 1970’s and 80’s.
The consolidation and acquisitions of smaller companies became all the rage. Everyone was vying for a bigger piece of the market. And while this can be a benefit to an industry where larger companies can allow smaller innovations to prosper at the same time it can as well mean a smaller differentiation of products available in the market and eventual less innovation in the longer run. Many companies seeking to gain and hold market share simply bought up the competition and integrating these products in their own line up or just buying the company simply to bury the idea or product. This was especially prevalent with smaller companies that had patented a process or product. If it were a threat to an industry it could simply be bought up through investment seed money and potentially removed from the market.
This was exactly what happened with the Nickel-metal hydride battery. The patent was eventually owned by an oil company and completely removed from the market.
The merging of so many companies over time brought about a simpler strategy of reduced innovation and maximization of profits. One of the largest contributions to cost savings was packaging. While plastic packaging was invented as far back as the mid-1800s, it really started to make its way into residential homes in the 1940s with the polyethylene food containers. Eventually small innovations kept leading to our ever-growing hunger for simplicity and convenience.
In the early 2000’s, ever so many products distributed nationally were being converted to plastic containers. Everyday products such as milk, juice, and eventually water transformed from glass and cardboard to the increasingly cheaper plastic bottles we now see everywhere. It was a sign of an industry looking for cheaper, lighter, and convenient packaging. It was a time of lowering costs for maximization of profits.
Courtesy of ourworldindata.org
The Impact of Plastic
The real impact of these decisions was slowly being realized. The ability to reuse and recycle these products had not been developed. It was easy to throw these products away and even more products became designed more for single use.
Over the past decade however, single use plastics impact has become ever more apparent. Landfills have filled up and plastic has entered our oceans. The length of time for plastics to be recycled was ever challenging. Recycling plastics itself had become challenging in two manners. First, it was hard to get the public to develop a habit of recycling and secondly it was more expensive to recycle than buy new.
Over the past decade there has been an ever-stronger movement to reduce the plastic waste problem. Cities and states have adopted more strict measures to curb single use plastic.
We at Naturel USA understand this issue and recognize even an adoption of small incremental measures can slowly help heal the problem faced today. Our relatively small line of products help to reduce the size of material being transported and weight. With a solid shampoo bar there is no additional weight of water being transported allowing for more products to be shipped with a smaller carbon footprint. Adding the benefit of being able to use plastic-free packaging every piece of packaging used to distribute our shampoo bars is recyclable. Simply put we’re working to do our part in the reduction of plastic used as a whole.
Why We Started