ATLANTIC’S SUSTAINABILITY PROGRAM
Supporting sustainability throughout the supply chain
Our Approach to Sustainability
- As a consultant, we’ll help you make changes to successfully reduce primary and secondary packaging.
- As a supplier, we’ll source more sustainable packaging materials for your applications.
- As a manufacturer, we have a robust Quality Management System and established methods to reduce our footprint.
Atlantic’s Sustainability Program
“The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it.” ~ Robert Swan
Atlantic is a company dedicated to the success of our customers. We design, manufacture, and supply packaging with the goal of protecting our customers’ products and protecting their brand.
We recognize the vital role that packaging plays in quality control, in the safe transit of products from one facility to another, and in brand reputation both with end users and within the supply chain. We also recognize the importance of good packaging design to minimize materials used and to restrict the environmental impact of unnecessary waste.
As a consultant, as a supplier, and as a manufacturer, Atlantic is dedicated to supporting sustainability throughout the supply chain. We have current processes in place as well as plans to continually improve our efforts in sustainability.
In the sections below, we detail our approach to sustainability in each of our business segments, explain our current processes, and outline our plan for evolving our sustainability goals.
As our customers engage in their own sustainability programs and make changes to reduce primary and secondary packaging, we are actively working with them to ensure that their efforts are successful all the way through the supply chain.
At the Packaging Solution Center in Charlotte, our Atlantic team of engineers audit, test, optimize, and monitor customers’ end-of-line packaging, particularly their stretch wrapping operations. We use our Stretch Management System to verify that their products are effectively protected during transit, even with the changes and reductions they’ve made.
A recent GMA/FMI study tells us that damaged product from load failure costs $7.2 billion annually in the food & beverage and health & beauty industries alone. The cost to the environment is just as significant. Load failure causes excess waste in landfills and excess greenhouse gas emissions from loads being returned to the manufacturer due to damage. These environmental costs can be severely mitigated by eliminating load damage and failure.
We use a four-step approach to stretch wrapping and end-of-line packaging. Our goals are to formulate a proven standard for optimal, minimal, successful packaging and then maintain that standard over the long term. We also offer training to educate our customers on the science of stretch wrapping.
Audit – We audit our customers’ stretch wrapping operations to get a baseline on film use, machine settings, and process efficiencies. We talk with operators and plant personnel to gather information and understand any chronic problems or tendencies specific to each wrapper.
Test – We use the TruMotion testing equipment and the Film Lab at the Packaging Solution Center to eliminate all unnecessary packaging and establish a proven standard for load containment.
Optimize – With the results from the audit and testing process, we replicate the proven standards inside the customers’ facilities. This involves adjustments to film and equipment as well as process improvements.
Monitor – MUST Monitoring is Atlantic’s patented hardware and software data recording system that monitors every load wrapped, records the amount of film that’s applied, and graphs this data in real time. This gives our experts the tools to communicate with customers and ensure that no load ever leaves their facility with improper stretch film application.
GOALS FOR IMPROVEMENT:
We advocate for high performance stretch film so our customers can use less material and still maintain successful load containment. We’re currently in the process of creating unique stretch film formulations based on our own Film Lab data and experience to bring what we consider to be the highest level of optimal film to the marketplace.
Our goal is to deliver high performance stretch film optimized with data-driven standards to ensure the least amount of material is needed for product protection.
As a supplier, we’re in a position to source more sustainable packaging materials for our customers’ applications. In addition to sourcing recyclable or sustainable materials whenever possible, we also promote the use of high-performance materials that require less applied material to provide the best possible protection. This lessens the impact on the environment and promotes healthier sustainability.
Our approach to packaging is to promote high-performance materials that require less material to provide the best product protection. Our consulting and technical services optimize our customers’ equipment, application, and process to best utilize these high performance materials.
While the per unit cost for our customers is higher than that of commodity materials, we have shown a return on investment that ultimately reduces costs due to less material needed, optimized application, and successful unit load delivery.
We also supply and promote Benchmark Green Stretch Film that offers 100% greater cube utilization; 50% reduction in cores, pallets, and transportation; and the ability to effectively ship two truckloads of material within one. Our customers eliminate excess packaging materials while also saving on greenhouse gas emissions by reducing the number of truckloads needed for delivery.
Atlantic works with our customers to reuse consumables such as cores and boxes. We help initiate third party recycling programs for their downstream waste such as labels, liner, and film. We also offer returnable skid programs and repair damaged pallets so they can be reused.
As we’ve expanded our footprint nationally, we’ve developed a full-service, in-house distribution network using our own trucks and drivers. This allows us to control and optimize economic and environmental logistics.
GOALS FOR IMPROVEMENT:
Packaging materials have a significant environmental impact and, as a supplier, we are in a position of influence to help our customers source more sustainable materials. With the right packaging materials and the right product protection, we have the ability to eliminate excess waste and damage.
While we have a strong start in this area, we have room for improvement in expanding our sources and in advocating for more recyclable, re-used, or reduced materials.
Atlantic operates multiple paper converting facilities as well as a full-service printing operation with digital, flexographic, and offset presses. We’ve developed systems that ensure we consider all possible impacts on sustainability and how to best minimize our footprint.
In our paper converting facilities, we have an active internal recycling stream where we recycle more than 30,000 tons of paper and paperboard every year, saving millions of trees and preventing this waster from entering landfills.
Our paper converting operations are certified through the Forest Stewardship Council® FSC® C016743. FSC® promotes environmentally appropriate, socially beneficial and economically viable management of the world’s forests.
We are also chain-of-custody certified through the Sustainable Forestry Initiative® (SFI), a forest certification program based on principles that promote sustainable forest management, including measures to protect water quality, biodiversity, wildlife habitat, species at risk, and Forests with Exceptional Conservation Value.
In addition, we are chain-of-custody certified through the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC), the world’s largest forest certification system. PEFC is an international non-profit non-governmental organization dedicated to promoting sustainable forest management through independent third-party certification.
GOALS FOR IMPROVEMENT:
We are always looking to improve our manufacturing processes in line with sustainability goals. Our print shop and two converting facilities have earned ISO 9001:2015 registration and passed rigorous audits to maintain that registration. As stated in our Quality Policy, we are dedicated to continuous improvement of our quality system and the products we produce.
We’re continuing to develop our systems with regularly reviewed, measurable objectives. Employees are empowered to explore opportunities for further improvement while commitment from Atlantic’s senior management group enables us to make data-driven decisions that continually improve our quality system and our offerings.
Consumers are recognizing the impacts of their choices and actions more and more every year. We all want to do what we feel is right for our community, our society, and our environment.
As a packaging consultant, supplier, and manufacturer, Atlantic recognizes the impact that our own choices and actions have in these same areas. We feel that we’re in a position of great influence when it comes to sustainability and how we can help our customers – and all consumers – have a positive impact on sustainability.
Atlantic has a clear path to sustainability in operation today as well as plans moving forward that ensure our commitment to sustainability continues to evolve and improve.
As technology advances, we are dedicated to finding new opportunities to lessen the impact of packaging on the environment and make our world a greener and happier place to live, work, and play.
Download our whitepapers that explore different ideas, trends, and recommendations for sustainable packaging.
Our Recent Articles on Sustainability
Read and share our insights and articles on sustainability in packaging.
Our customers have well defined, measurable sustainability goals and, as their partner in packaging, we’re committed to helping them achieve these goals. Along the way, we also help them develop strategies that improve their sustainability in new ways.