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The Packaging Assessment Tool


Sustainable packaging decision making is an increasingly complex process. This is due in large part to the growing number of available sustainable packaging options, combined with the array of packaging environmental and effectiveness considerations.

The purpose of the interactive packaging assessment tool is to help users navigate this complex process. By helping a user consider the various sustainable packaging options, and accounting for the array of packaging environmental and effectiveness considerations, the interactive assessment tools aims to provide a packaging “heat map” – a summary of how well current and potential packaging solutions meet the required considerations.

The Packaging Decision Making Framework

As outlined in more detail in this Guide, the packaging decision making framework combines the sustainable packaging option categories as defined by the EMF, with the key packaging environmental and effectiveness considerations, as outlined below.

Sustainable Packaging Option Categories

  1. Elimination and Reduction
  2. Reuse and Refill
  3. Recycled Content
  4. Recyclability and Actual Recycling
  5. Substitution

Packaging Environmental and Effectiveness Considerations

  1. Consumer Choice, Availability, Accessibility & Convenience
  2. Ensuring Compliance with Food Safety Regulations
  3. Minimizing Food Waste
  4. Cost & Return on Investment
  5. Labelling, Branding and Marketing
  6. Minimizing Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Other Environmental Impacts
  7. Minimizing Plastic Waste
  8. Minimizing Plastic Pollution

The Packaging Assessment Workflow

The interactive packaging assessment tool follows a multi-step process to guide the user from context setting thru to assessment, leading to the development of an assessment “heat map” to inform the development or update of a packaging strategy or roadmap.