DS Smith embeds circular design metrics across all packaging sites

Sustainable packaging leader DS Smith announced today it has embedded its pioneering Circular Design Metrics across all its packaging sites to support the transition to a circular economy and help customers achieve their ESG goals, furthering its commitment to meeting customer needs as the corporate world embraces ESG and works to set and meet targets that reduce environmental impacts.

Corporations around the world are working to create and implement ESG plans that meet the demands of all stakeholders, and CEOs specifically are facing increased pressures to meet those goals. According to a recent KPMG survey of 1,325 chief executives, 58% are “seeing increased demands from stakeholders — such as investors, regulators and customers — for increased reporting and transparency on ESG issues.”[1]

Much of the challenge for business stems from the ability to capture data and transparently report on activity against these goals. In an industry first, DS Smith can now measure and quantify the sustainability performance of each of its packaging designs across eight key indicators: carbon footprint, design for reuse, supply chain optimization, recyclability, planet safety, material utilization, renewable source and recycled content.

DS Smith is the only packaging producer to offer this unique tool which gives its customers across a wide range of sectors such as FMCG, industrial, retail and e-commerce a clear view of their packaging designs’ circularity performance. 

As more than 80% of a product’s environmental impact is made at the design stage, data from Circular Design Metrics enables brands and retailers to compare different design solutions, helping them to reduce waste and pollution and keep materials and products in use for longer. In addition, it supplies them with valuable data that can be shared in ESG reporting to demonstrate what DS Smith customers are doing to reduce their carbon footprint.

“Many of our customers have ambitious targets to increase the sustainability of their packaging and designing for sustainability is a crucial element in getting closer to a Circular Economy,” said Brian Romankow, design and innovation manager, DS Smith North America Packaging, Paper and Recycling. “Using our Circular Design Metrics, our customers can easily compare different design solutions and rate their circularity so they can use the solution that best supports their ESG targets. Working together, we can support our customers in their transition to a circular economy to create a better and more sustainable future for generations to come.”

The rollout of the Circular Design Metrics follows the launch of the Circular Design Principles last year which were developed in collaboration with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation. All of DS Smith’s 700 designers have been trained on how to apply the principles to design packaging solutions fit for the Circular Economy.

The Circular Economy is at the heart of DS Smith’s Now and Next strategy, focusing on closing the loop through better design, protecting natural resources by making the most of every fibre through circular solutions and equipping people to lead the transition to a circular economy. By 2023, DS Smith will manufacture 100% reusable or recyclable packaging and its aim is that by 2030, all its packaging will be recycled or reused.

About DS Smith

DS Smith is a leading provider of sustainable, fiber-based packaging worldwide, supported by recycling and papermaking operations. It plays a central role in the value chain across sectors including e-commerce, fast moving consumer goods and industrials. Through its purpose of ‘Redefining Packaging for a Changing World’ and its Now and Next sustainability strategy, DS Smith is committed to leading the transition to the circular economy, while delivering more circular solutions for its customers and wider society – replacing problem plastics, taking carbon out of supply chains and providing innovative recycling solutions. Its bespoke box-to-box in 14 days model, design capabilities and innovation strategy sits at the heart of this response. A Strategic Partner of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, North American operations are headquartered in Atlanta, with 15 manufacturing, paper and recycling facilities, totaling more than 2,000 employees. 

DS Smith operates in 34 countries employing around 30,000 people and is a Strategic Partner of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation.