Eco Design in the Packaging Industry

The Steinbes Europa Zentrum German institute hired us to design a poster and communication campaign for their “Danube PIE – Product Innovation through Eco Design in the Danube Region” project. Apart from this task, we were selected as a consultant on this project, supported by the European Commission, which should provide specific eco design services to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Serbia. In December 2013, the project activities included also the first eco design training session for Serbian companies.

The project emphasizes the packaging and print industries, which are de facto biggest polluters of the environment. Up to 44% of greenhouse gases come from these industries. Due to the pollution generated by these industries, the European Union adopted the European Parliament and Council Directive 94/62/EC of 20 December 1994 on packaging and packaging waste. In 2009, the Serbian Parliament adopted the Law on Packaging and Packaging waste, mandatory for all companies in the country.

Eco design optimises packaging to completely eliminate environmental impact by ensuring a more efficient use of resources, minimum global warming and tougher control of toxic chemicals. The Danube PIE is a first project of its kind in this region. It envisions promotion of “greening” production processes and product design that lowers production costs, increases company competitiveness, and enables a more efficient use of materials and energy, resulting in minimisation of environmental impact.

“Pack it & Protect it!” poster promotes environmental awareness, motivates action and most of all informs on consulting and educational services available to SMEs in the Danube region.

In order to illustrate the importance of an environmental approach to production, primarily in the packaging industry, our team selected a motif that represents eco design through one of the most precise associations of nature – a tree. A tree is a symbol of growth, strength and greening, which are at the same time the goals which companies should strive for. The box with recycling symbols (Recycle, Reuse, Reduce i Green Dot), a part of the design solution, represents a more responsible packaging industry and emphasises a more efficient use of materials.

The design of the “Pack it & Protect it!” poster has an aesthetic and marketing value, with a role to stimulate innovative thinking. The poster is an important promotional project tool, giving information on the importance of eco design, motivating the target group – small and medium enterprises – to join in the project activities. The complete graphical solution fits in the existing visual identity of the project.