UPS has announced that it has partnered with international recycling company TerraCycle to unveil an innovative reusable and returnable tote system for managing consumer packaging. Entitled Loop, the system will be tested in Paris and New York this year as a first step toward full implementation in consumer markets.
The Loop system eliminates the reliance on single-use packaging for consumer goods by offering customers a variety of products in customized, brand-specific, durable packaging that is delivered direct to customers, then collected, cleaned, refilled and redelivered.
“Loop will not just eliminate the idea of packaging waste, but will greatly improve the product experience and shopping convenience,” said TerraCycle CEO Tom Szaky.
“Innovation is key to everything we do at UPS, and we are thrilled to support TerraCycle with packaging design for the Loop tote, as well as pickup and delivery services for Loop customers,” said UPS chief sales and solutions officer, Kate Gutmann. “As a leader in environmental sustainability, and a champion and catalyst for a circular economy, UPS looks forward to helping to bring Loop to life.”
Loop customers will receive durable, reusable or fully recyclable packaging made from materials such as alloys, glass and engineered plastics. Even the outer shipping container is part of the design innovation – a state-of-the art shipping tote will eliminate the need for single-use boxes and offer consumers an elegant solution that reduces waste.
UPS and TerraCycle collaborated to design outer packaging that can handle liquids, dry goods and personal care products, with protective dividers inside, using materials that offer easy cleaning for reuse. The UPS Package Design and Test Lab helped to custom design and test packaging to be appealing to consumers, yet durable enough to be used time and again. The UPS Lab is certified by the International Safe Transit Association (ISTA) to conduct ISTA package integrity testing procedures.
“UPS helped TerraCycle to design the exterior and interior of the Loop tote container in ways we could never have done ourselves. Expert UPS testing also helped us to provide feedback to Loop consumer packaged goods partners regarding the primary packaging of products within the tote,” said TerraCycle chief design junkie, Tiffany Threadgould.