We’ve been working hard to find packaging solutions that align with our values, meet our customers' needs, and keep the long-term health of the planet in mind. We are excited to share innovative packaging solutions (including Prevented Ocean Plastic™!) that help ensure our footprint on the planet is as light as possible.
Step by step, we are committed to moving toward more sustainable and circular packaging for all of our products—so that you feel good about every single purchase you make.
In this article:
- Our Commitment to Circular Packaging
- Prevented Ocean Plastic™
- Our Packaging Partnerships
- What’s Next on Our Packaging Journey
As an herbal products company, product packaging is a key part of our business, and we are committed to providing more sustainable and circular packaging. Circular packaging is designed with the whole life cycle of that packaging in mind—once the product is used, that packaging can be reused, recycled, or composted, instead of thrown away, which lowers the environmental impact.
This commitment is tied to our three packaging goals, which are to:
Reduce waste and packaging pollution
Reduce greenhouse gas emissions and fossil fuels in our packaging
Source safe, non-toxic packaging materials
In alignment with our packaging commitments and goals, we are thrilled to be transitioning our entire tablet line to bottles that are made with 100% Prevented Ocean Plastic™ (POP). This means that for every bottle purchased, you save another plastic bottle from entering the ocean.
The Problem with Plastic in Our Oceans
Every year, over 10 million tons of plastic are dumped into the ocean.1 And because plastic is not biodegradable or water soluble, every little bit of it remains in the ocean. Here, the sun and salt break it down into tiny particles, or microplastics, which pose a massive threat to the health of the oceans and surrounding ecosystems.
This eventually causes harm all the way up the food chain, compromising the health of land animals and even humans. In fact, it’s estimated that humans ingest an average of about 5 grams of plastic per week, equivalent to a full spoonful!2
Prevention Is the Solution
In the same way that Ayurveda teaches prevention as the key to a healthy life, preventing plastics from reaching the water is the best way to protect healthy oceans.
Unlike plastic waste harvested directly from the ocean, Prevented Ocean Plastic™ works with coastal communities to collect ocean-bound plastic from polluted areas before it reaches the ocean and begins to break down into harmful microparticles.
The Benefits of POP Include:
Recycled vs. Virgin Plastic: Every ocean-bound plastic bottle created means one less new virgin plastic bottle needs to be made and introduced to the environment.
Lower Carbon Footprint: Choosing recycled plastic over virgin single-use plastic helps reduce fossil fuels and mitigate greenhouse gas emissions.
Protects the Oceans: Ocean-bound plastic is collected from within 30 miles of the ocean, protecting the oceans, marine life, and surrounding ecosystems.
Supports Coastal Communities: In alignment with our commitment to fair trade, plastic collectors are paid fairly for collecting packaging waste in their communities. It also provides a cleaner, safer working and living environment.
Spreads Awareness: As more businesses provide ocean-bound plastic to their consumers, the demand for recycled plastic increases.
By collecting, recycling, and reprocessing ocean bound plastic waste, we are supporting collectors, helping to clean up the ocean, and reducing our need for virgin plastic. Together, we are creating a lasting environmental and social impact.
How It Works
By providing an opportunity to collect plastic bottles in exchange for payment, the Prevented Ocean Plastic™ program empowers people around the globe to earn a living while simultaneously cleaning their local coastlines and helping to prevent ocean plastic pollution.
Here’s how it works:
Bottle collectors in coastal communities gather plastic waste that would otherwise end up in the ocean—anything within a 30 mile radius of the shoreline or of a major waterway that feeds into the ocean.
These plastics are taken to local collection centers for payment. Here, the plastic bottles get sorted and categorized. Everything that is recyclable is pressed and transported to plastic recycling factories.
At the factory, the plastic gets washed, sanitized, and processed into small pieces of raw, recycled material. This entire process is regulated to meet European and North American quality standards.
This recycled material is shipped to our bottle manufacturer, where it is made into our 100% Prevented Ocean Plastic™ tablet bottles. Each time you order a bottle, you become part of the cycle of ocean plastic prevention.
Limitations of Prevented Ocean Plastic™
Using Prevented Ocean Plastic™ does come with some challenges. For example, the size and color of the packaging requires more state of the art equipment at recycling facilities to recognize and sort it into the proper category (not into the trash pile), which means it isn’t recyclable everywhere.
Also, our tablet bottle lids are unfortunately still made from virgin plastic, and we haven't found a viable option for recycled lids. When recycling lids, check locally to see if your recycling facility accepts them and whether they should be left on or taken off the bottle.
While Prevented Ocean Plastic™ may not be perfect, the benefits of moving away from virgin plastic to this special recycled plastic is a very big step in the right direction!
We are members of three packaging collaboratives in the natural products industry:
- The Climate Collaborative
- One Step Closer’s Packaging Collaborative
- Thrive Market’s Plastic Action Working Group
Packaging is one of the most complex and challenging problems facing our industry and the environment. These partnerships support collaboration to achieve more sustainable and circular packaging solutions.
We started our pursuit for more sustainable packaging over eight years ago, and we have learned that finding packaging solutions is rarely easy or straightforward. It involves lengthy research, unexpected challenges, and sometimes making hard decisions to balance environmental responsibility, cost, and customer experience.
We are so proud of our new tablet bottles using Prevented Ocean Plastics™. This is a huge step on our road to more sustainable packaging! But our search for more eco-friendly packaging isn't over—we have many steps to go to address packaging across all of our products.
We promise to keep assessing and improving our packaging over the coming years as technology and infrastructure present more viable options, and we'll keep sharing our story, challenges, and the exciting solutions we have found along the way.