Packaging innovation helps in battle to reduce Christmas gift landfill

Submitted by: The Two Sides Team 20/12/2016

An innovative packaging producer is helping in the annual battle against Christmas landfill by making a sustainable alternative to plastic in gift packaging.

James Cropper 3D Products, which is based in Burneside, near the Lake District, launched this year. 

The company is part of James Cropper PLC, which has already attracted international attention for developing the world’s first coffee cup recycling plant.

The company makes moulded paper packaging which can be recycled with household paper and offers a sustainable alternative to plastics - including those used in gift packaging at Christmas. 

The wood pulp used to make the packaging comes from either Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) or Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC) accredited forests, which contribute to maintaining biodiversity and capturing carbon dioxide.

Colour scientists at James Cropper can match moulded paper to literally any colour – a key factor in motivating global brands to make the switch from plastic. 


Dreaming of a Green Christmas

James Cropper PLC Chief Technology Officer Patrick Willink said moulded paper could help reduce the amount of waste going to landfill at Christmas by providing an easily recyclable alternative to plastic packaging. 

Around 125,000 tonnes of plastic packaging are sent to landfill in the UK at Christmas according to DEFRA. 

DEFRA figures also show only 31.6 per cent of plastic used in the UK is recycled - compared to 89.4 per cent of paper. 

Mr Willink said: “Moulded paper is a very attractive for brands looking for an alternative to internal plastic packaging for gift sets, gift boxes and other product packaging.

“Gift packaging, in particular, is all about providing a special brand experience for the people who buy your products. It has been difficult to find an alternative to plastic which can do this in the past. 

Beautiful packaging without compromising sustainability

“Moulded paper packaging is easily recyclable and uses wood pulp sourced from sustainably managed forests.  But it does not require brands to compromise – in fact it can enhance the experience for consumers in terms of colour, tactility and technical features such as embossing. 

“In the past it has been difficult to reflect the range of colours that are available in plastic. However, at our colour lab we are now able to offer moulded paper in any colour, which means it has become a real viable alternative for use across a range of sectors including luxury drinks, health and beauty, consumer electronics or e-retail.

“Moulded paper also has a warmth and texture that makes it attractive to brands and consumers who increasingly value that connection with nature and sense of authenticity. 

“The important thing is that it is making it easier for brands to use moulded paper as a true alternative to plastic. Considering the comparative recycling rates for the two materials, we hope this will mean less waste from packaging going to landfill during the Christmas period in the future.”

Mr Willink said James Cropper 3D Products, which launched in September, is already working with a number of well-known brands looking to use more sustainable materials in their packaging. 

He said: “We know that sustainability is becoming more and more of a priority for brands who want to appeal to environmentally conscious customers. Our moulded paper is designed to answer this need while adding to brand experience and their brand story.”

For more information, visit 

Source: Images © James Cropper 3D Products