Ericsson Improves Supply Chain Sustainability with Plastic-Free Packaging

by Carolyn Mathas

Ericsson just announced a sustainable packaging solution for shipping Ericsson Remote Radio products, moving from oil-based plastics to wood fiber materials for the packaging inserts. The new materials are fully recyclable and reduce total plastic content from 20% to less than one percent.

The material features an anti-abrasion coating, so Ericsson can remove the plastic bag typically used to protect the product’s surface. The only remaining plastic content is the tape used to seal the outer package. The company worked with two suppliers, Nefab and DS Smith, to develop two designs incorporating the new materials while retaining the high structural integrity required to protect the product during shipping.

In addition to eliminating plastics and being fully recyclable, calculations show that the carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) impact of the new packaging from cradle to grave reaches a balanced or better result than existing solutions.

Ericsson partnered with Deutsche Telekom and Swisscom for initial tests of the packaging solution, planning to use it for more products. The global effort to reach Net Zero and new legislation and taxes on plastic packaging will require an industry-wide shift in the types of materials used in global supply chains.

Ericsson hopes that following the successful trials with Swisscom and Deutsche Telekom, the new packaging solution will be rolled out to more customers in the coming months and will expand to cover more hardware products in the future.

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