21 July 2016
By Tetra Pak Editorial Team 
The strain on the planet’s natural resources demands an imperative for change. A restorative model embodied by the use of renewable materials—those natural resources that can be regrown or refurbished over time—from responsibly managed sources can have a transformative effect on our economy and on our environment, including climate change.

In 2015, Tetra Pak’s Moving To The Front initiative, a foremost educational initiative to address the impacts of resource scarcity on businesses, introduced the Learning Labs series of events and activities. These Learning Labs have served as a platform for robust stakeholder engagement and dialogues across the consumer packaged goods supply chain to explore understanding of this issue among industry, including perceived challenges and barriers to adoption to awareness of the potential reward that comes from use of renewable materials to mitigate natural resource scarcity and contribute to long-term growth strategies.

The findings from our Learning Labs are intended to help fill the knowledge void and share collective insights to help advance understanding of the positive impacts of packaging made with renewable materials and encourage further adoption.

The Learning Labs revealed that four factors—what we call the 4 Cs—impact increased adoption of renewable materials among industry.
  • Communication
  • Complexity
  • Cost
  • Consumer demand
Even when stakeholders understand—at a basic level—the benefits of using renewable materials. These benefits are not yet enough to overcome the perceived challenges of the 4 Cs.

Capturing the critical gains that come from using renewable materials from responsibly managed sources will be a significant component of the shift to a circular economy framework, which experts estimate will generate $1 trillion in economic value.

To move forward in this direction, industry must:

Work toward a Common Understanding of what renewable resources are and the value they bring. Universal comprehension and alignment around their true meaning is the first step in recognizing the benefits they provide.

Focus On “Here and Now” Technologies that are economically and commercially viable options that can be implemented and/or adopted today.

Enhance Alignment and Increase Knowledge Sharing among All Actors to increase understanding of how using renewable materials from responsibly managed sources serves as a key mitigation strategy to address resource scarcity and climate change. As we shift towards a circular economy mindset, the more voices that join in, the better our ability to create significant critical mass in the journey toward a regenerative economy.

Educate Consumers, who, with the right education and information, have shown to be responsive to the value and benefits of renewables and are prepared to adapt their purchasing behaviors accordingly.

The newly released Learning Labs report highlights findings from this initiative and is part of Tetra Pak's commitment to inform and inspire others to take action.

Learn more about Moving to the Front.

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