When it comes to reducing our impact on the environment, there are no shortage of ideas. From basic recycling to using less plastic, living an eco-friendly way of life is a long-term goal and mission. For those who run businesses, you may want to reduce your inevitable carbon footprint as well. Take, for example, the idea of food packaging.

In the past, plastic materials were commonly used for food packaging. However, this is becoming a far less popular option as greener packaging alternatives are introduced. For business owners looking to package their food better, there are a myriad of ways to do so. It all starts with how creative you want to get with it!

Being environmentally friendly involves making changes to our everyday life, starting with our packaging ideas. Here are six of the best ideas for environmentally friendly food packaging:

1. Recycled Paper Cup Packaging

Recycled paper packaging has seen a surge in popularity in recent years. As many countries are beginning to ban plastic straws, paper has been used as a replacement. Apply that same sentiment to bottles, and you have an environmentally friendly packaging idea.

The key here is to use recycled paper for packaging cups, bottles, and beverage containers. As a business owner, you most likely have reservations about the durability of the paper material, especially when you are serving hot beverages. However, extensive testing has been conducted to make this a feasible option, with very promising results.

Many companies who have constituted recycled paper food packaging have made the paper material water-resistant. So, you don’t have to worry about the packaging being damaged by the liquids!

2. Cornstarch Food Packaging

Cornstarch is not just an ingredient used to make some of your favourite dishes. In fact, cornstarch can be used as an environmentally friendly way to package food. As mentioned previously, plastic is being discouraged in food packaging, so organic materials like cornstarch are taking the charge in its place.

Cornstarch can be an excellent natural way to contain dairy products. This comes down to the item’s texture, which is plastic-like in its consistency. Cornstarch can be used to form cups and bottles, for example. It doesn’t just stop here either, as the food packaging ideas are limited only by your imagination!

3. Plant-Based Food Packaging

If you ever wondered about just how imaginative packaging can get, you’ll be amazed with the wonders of plant-based food packaging. Some food companies have devised a packaging idea that can immediately be planted into fertile soil. After you remove your food item, the packaging is first soaked in water. Then, you can plant it into soil, and it will eventually spring back up as a tree.

It is truly an ingenious way of both housing food products, in addition to redistributing the waste to the environment. This packaging is made from organic materials, such as basil, which helps to facilitate its natural growth.

4. Organic Food Packaging

You see plastic bags in use almost every day. From supermarkets to largescale retailers, it seems as if they are in unlimited supply. However, the prevailing notion around their use is that they are not good for our environment. This is because plastic can be extremely hard to break down. Often, food packaging made with plastic ends up being a source of pollution.

To remedy this, organic materials can be the basis of your food packaging. These types of products are made from organic materials, such as hemp seed or recycled cotton. The best part is that they will break down at the end of their lifecycle, making them more compostable than plastic packaging. When in doubt, always go for the organic option!

If you are looking for an innovative example, expect to see seaweed dominating the eco-friendly food packaging market. Some designers have already used this food item to construct a new type of packaging. The benefit of seaweed packaging is that it requires no chemical processing, making this a clean alternative to the already established packaging ideas.

5. Leaf Plates

Leaf plates are not in mass distribution yet. However, this environmentally friendly food packaging idea is poised to make a substantial impact when it is put into production. Leaf plates are just as they are described: large leaves form the basis of a bowl. The bowl is then covered with a recycled plastic lid, which contains the food inside.

The leaves themselves are not edible, so they should be discarded once you are ready. When it comes to being as eco-friendly as possible, leaf plates are a huge breakthrough in the food packaging industry. With no synthetics in the packaging, it is as clean and natural as you can get!

6. Reusable Bags

Instead of hoarding a large supply of plastic bags in your inventory, why not keep a reusable alternative? Reusable bags are already in use by customers, but they are now being implemented in businesses as well. The bags themselves are made from raw materials, allowing them to be used multiple times.

Reusable bags can be a great way to contain certain food products, such as meats. By making the bag temperature-resistant, business owners will be able to preserve their precious inventories. It will then be an excellent way to keep your products as fresh as possible!