The Environmental Benefits of Reusable Supermarket Crates

Plastic supermarket crates address growing demands from retailers to eliminate packaging waste and reduce environmental impact. 

What are the benefits of reusing supermarket crates?

The Totebox range of supermarket crates (also known as produce trays) provides an environmentally friendly solution for transporting chilled and frozen produce, as well as general grocery items at an ambient temperature.

Reusable supermarket crates stack securely on bale-arms and nest together to save valuable space on return transport. They’re used extensively by food processors, retailers, food service companies and logistics operations.

The environmental benefits of reusing crates come from reducing both packaging and food waste. Additional benefits are gained through improved operational efficiencies; saving you time and money.

Reducing transit packaging

Increasing awareness of environmental issues means that customers require reassurance that both product and packaging are environmentally responsible. Many companies are addressing this by creating closed-loop systems that adhere to the philosophy of organisations like the Carbon Trust of reducing: reuse and recycle. 

Environmentally friendly supermarket crates tick all three boxes. Because they’re reused repeatedly over many years, each individual reusable plastic container could replace hundreds of single-use cardboard boxes. They’re also 100% recyclable, making new from old, at the end of their long service.

Environmental assessments have found that reusable supermarket crates are more carbon-efficient than single-trip cardboard trays after just 20 trips. The findings took into account the full life cycle of the crates including raw material production, manufacturing, customer use (including transport and crate washing) and disposal or recycling at the end of its working life.

With a life expectancy of upwards of seven years in continuous use, Totebox plastic containers could provide a substantial reduction in a user’s environmental footprint. 

When replacing single-use packaging with reusable plastic containers, most users find that they’re saving money within one or two years. So, after seven-plus years, these savings can be enormous.

22 Litre – Ventilated 30×18 inch Confectionery Tray with Dividers (762x457x92mm)

Reducing primary and sundry packaging waste

Supermarket crates allow users to reduce the amount of both primary packaging and packaging sundries from the supply chain. 

The protective nature of reusable plastic crates means that many fruit and vegetables can be distributed loose, with little or no additional packaging or protection. Reusable plastic trays require no taping or stapling and stack securely on pallets, eliminating the need for stretch wrapping or banding when fitted with a pallet lid.

Eliminating or reducing primary packaging and packaging sundries provide further cost and environmental savings.

Reducing food waste

Food waste along the supply chain is a major contributor to increasing the carbon footprint. Totebox supermarket crates and produce trays have been designed to maintain their quality throughout the journey from grower or food manufacturer to retail point-of-sale.

Design features include ventilated sides to aid airflow (speeding cooling and helping to maintain a constant temperature), curved corners and smooth sides (protect produce from knocks and bruising), while secure stacking prevents the loss caused by a pallet load collapsing during transit or handling by forklift.

Increasing longevity and preventing loss of fresh produce means that there is less waste, so more produce survives the journey from field fork; further reducing carbon footprint and saving money.

Contact us 

If you have any questions or queries please don’t hesitate to contact us on 01327 340 177 or head over to our contact page to fill in our online enquiry form.

 

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