Public discussion about packaging and sustainability often tends to judge packaging as superfluous. However, in reality packaging often has a leverage function: its content has more potential impact then the packaging itself. Packaging therefore has a unique potential to improve not only sustainability aspects of the packaging itself, but the life cycle of the accompanied products as well, going beyond the reduction in materials and use the core functions of protection and information on new levels. Existing tools on accessing sustainability require specialist knowledge and expertise and often aren’t aimed at the development process of. Furthermore “invisible” consequences (efficiency, product loss) are more often then not neglected. The dissimilarity and large variety in approaches towards incorporating sustainability illustrate a packaging chain out of balance and asks for an approach towards global optimization of the packaging chain.The entwined life cycles of packaging and product.
The goal of this research theme is to map specifications of a safeguard for sustainability throughout the whole packaging chain (framework) and translating these specifications into means of improving implementation and rationalization of sustainability in practice(expertise center).