Dispelling the Myths About Sustainable Takeout Food Packaging

Dispelling the Myths About Sustainable Takeout Food Packaging

Years ago, consumers considered environmentally beneficial initiatives an 'added bonus' when making a purchase. But today, people's attitudes have changed, and it is now the expected standard among the growing number of green-minded shoppers. And when it comes to their desired improvements, packaging often ranks as the top concern in their sustainability wish list.

According to surveys, 70% are willing to pay a higher price for eco-friendly packaging, while 64% want brands to do more to reduce their material usage and ensure that whatever they use is as sustainable as possible.

Forward-thinking businesses from the retail industry and even the F&B sector, with its booming takeout culture, have heard these demands and are now one of the drivers behind the popularity of sustainable packaging. But as with any shift that promotes change, there will be misconceptions that mar its positive image. Below, we look at some of these common myths and uncover the reality behind them.

1. Sustainable Food Packaging Is Less Durable

Performance and durability are undoubtedly important when dealing with takeout, which often includes items like hot soups and cold sodas. But while plastic has reigned as the most durable solution to store these food products, sustainable food packaging has come a long way since its inception and can now match the former's highly sought-after qualities without its environmental drawbacks.

Bioplastics, made from plant-based materials instead of petroleum, is one example that performs similarly to traditional plastics yet is much more environmentally friendly. Another excellent plastic alternative is Kraft paper, derived from the kraft pulping process and features significant durability, tear resistance, and high versatility.

Overall, many innovations now abound in the sustainable packaging landscape, and there is no shortage of options that can meet your business's needs. Speaking of options, this brings us to our next misconception.

2. There Are Limited Choices for Sustainable Food Packaging

Sustainable food packaging has seen many advancements in just a short period of time and now features a wide selection to choose from. Besides bioplastics and Kraft paper, other examples include:

  • Compostable packaging

Compostable refers to a material's ability to naturally decompose without leaving any toxic residues, which is inherent in compostable packaging since they are generally made from plant-based materials.

  • Recycled packaging

Recycled packaging is derived from recycled materials like plastics, metals, and paper, giving them a second life. This approach to creating packaging solutions conserves natural resources, reduces the amount of waste in landfills, and prevents pollution by reducing the need for raw materials.

  • Corn starch

As its name implies, corn starch packaging is made out of corn starch, a renewable and biodegradable resource that does not contain any harmful toxins. Corn starch packaging comes in many forms, from disposable food packaging to biodegradable packing peanuts.

  • Cellulose

Cellulose packaging is sourced from natural sources like cotton, wood, and hemp, making it both compostable and biodegradable. F&B businesses, in particular, are increasingly using cellulose packaging due to its moisture-resistant properties.

  • Glassine

Glassine is a sustainable, acid-free, and pH-neutral paper packaging with a smooth, grease-resistant texture and a transparent appearance. It is highly popular for packaging baked goods and other treats. Made from wood pulp, glassine paper is thick and high-density, granting it greater stiffness, tensile strength, and folding endurance compared to other thin paper materials.

3. Sustainable Food Packaging Is Boring and Does Not Help Brands Stand Out

When talking about sustainable packaging, images of unremarkable browns and rough, fibrous pulp often come to mind. But as mentioned, packaging innovation means sustainable options can now be as rich in colours, textures, and effects as the regular packaging available today.

Soy and water-based inks provide rich and vibrant hues with little to no volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and biodegradable coatings can create special effects on packaging solutions without dire environmental effects. The bottom line is that almost any packaging design can be produced sustainably, and switching to greener materials does not necessarily mean sacrificing brand creativity.


It is clear how critical packaging can influence the modern consumer's behaviour, and brands that employ eco-friendly materials and processes stand a better chance of gaining the business of today's environmentally-conscious shoppers. By unpacking the most common misconceptions surrounding sustainable packaging, businesses can get a clearer view of what it can really offer for their growth.

Convinced about the merits of going all in on sustainable food packaging? Supply Smiths is your one-stop shop for all your food packaging needs, whether you’re looking for a plastic container for food, Kraft take away box or pizza box. With our commitment to providing an extensive line of packaging solutions that cater to businesses and individuals alike, you can rest assured that we have something for everyone.

To learn more about our packaging supplies and materials, feel free to visit our website today or reach out to us at any time!‍