Greener Package award: non-food primary packaging

Household Essentials Ironing Board Cover & Pad


The new packaging uses no plastic material whatsoever - neither PVC nor OPP (two commonly used plastic materials for packaging ironing board covers and pads in the industry today). Our new packaging consists of folding the one-piece construction ironing board cover and pad in to a tight rectanglular shape, then tucking the fold in to the sewn-in Packaging Pouch, and securing the product with a recycled paper "belly band". The sewn-in Packaging Pouch serves as both a packaging solution and a convenient spray starch and spray bottle holder for the consumer. Addititionally, the cotton cover material is treated with a Nano coating (an 85% water based coating) which improves the durability and stain & scorch resistance of our product. This product was awarded a Silver Level Cradle to CradleŽ Certification (which is 3rd party verification of our eco-intelligent design based on material content, recyclability and manufacturing characteristics.) The new packaging reduces the size (by 35%) and weight (by 14%) of the packaged item, thereby reducing the number of freight containers shipped via sea and commercial trucking by 51 containers per year.

Motivation for Change

The typical approach to packaging ironing board covers and pads is to fold the material to an acceptable shelf display size and then seal the product in a protective plastic bag (either PVC or OPP).


The "belly band" is made of 100% recycled paper.

Material Health

The units are now treated with an 85% water based Nano stain and scorch resistant coating instead of a Teflon-like stain and scorch coating. This change eliminated end-user's exposure to more dangerous chemicals. The recycled paper belly band is also printed with non-toxic color inks. The product always has been, and continues to be, safe for the end-user. However, by eliminating the use of PVC plastic, we have also eliminated any potential health risks associated with exposure to these plastic materials. We also work closely with MBDC (Cradle to Cradle), a 3rd party who audits our products to help identify healthy materials that are safe for our consumers and for the environment.

Resource & Energy Optimization

With approximately 4 million ironing board covers and pads sold per year, the new packaging reduces our freight cost per piece by 15%. The new packaging also reduces the planogram footprint by approximately 35%. The redesigned packaging allows us to pack 4 units per case (just as before) while reducing the size of the case by 15%. This reduction in case size allows us to fit 72 more units on a pallet. We are now able to fit 360 units on a pallet, compared to only 288 units before the package redesign. This is a 25% increase in the number of units that can fit on one pallet. Whereas before the package redesign we shipped the products in 350 containers per year, we now ship the newly packaged product in only 299 containers per year. This means there are 51 fewer trucks on the road,a 15% decrease in the number of trucks year. New packaging also reduces planogram footprint by approximately 35%. The old planogram footprint was 148.5 square inches versus the new planogram footprint which is 97 square inches.

Categories: Consumer Goods Paper & Board Greener Package Award Winner Retail