Packaging & Promotional Materials - The PC Way

Pacific Composting sustainable packaging and promotional materials

At Pacific Composting we strongly believe in the importance of a circular economy, a model designed to minimize wastes and make the most of available resources, for the benefit of the environment and society.
This has always been in the back of our minds as we’ve carefully selected the products we want to carry, and the ways in which to make them available to our customers.

Given the quantities of packaging and promotional materials we use on a regular basis, this has naturally been a very important area for us to zone in on, and work hard at making as environmentally-responsible as we possibly can.

We’ll be the first to admit that we haven’t always been able to use earth-friendly choices in every single situation - especially since a big part of our mission is to make composting as accessible (which includes affordability) as we possibly can. In cases where we do need to use a less eco-friendly option, we always try to choose products with a small footprint, or ones that can be reused/repurposed in some way.

Building a truly circular business will always be a work-in-progress - as it should be - but we’ve received some incredibly kind and thoughtful words of support from our customers, helping us to feel like we’re headed in the right direction. This has also inspired us to share what we’ve been doing here on the website.

Packaging

We’re all about composting, so it should come as no surprise that many of our packaging materials are fully compostable. In cases where this hasn’t been a viable option, we always want to use supplies that fall into at least one of the following categories: 1) Recycled / Recyclable, 2) Reusable / Repurposable, 3) Small Waste Footprint.

Below, you will find descriptions of our main packaging and promotional supplies, and - where applicable - some tips for how to compost or reuse / repurpose them.

Bags

Pacific Composting live composting worms for sale come in a burlap bag

Hemp/Burlap Worm Bags

The bags we use to (lovingly) pack our composting worms and their rich, living habitat in, are both attractive and useful.

They are durable enough to be re-used for your own worm castings or other contents, but also fully biodegradable when exposed to warm, damp conditions and a population of decomposer microorganisms.

How to Use - You can reuse these bags for castings and temporary worm/habitat storage, or repurpose as a compost tea bag, or makeshift plant starter pot that can be added directly to your garden bed! If composting is your preference, we recommend placing them just under your cover bedding in a worm composting system, where they will help to keep conditions moist in the worm zone below. Over time, as they start to break down, you will likely find your worms concentrating in and around them - maybe even depositing quite a few cocoons in the woven structure!

 

Kraft Paper Amendment Bags

Pacific Composting amendments

These are the bags used for our pH Buffer Grit and BioChar products.

How to Use - These bags aren’t ideally suited for small-scale home composting (eg worm bins), but they can be added to large-scale, hot composting systems, or be re-used for various dry goods, such as bulk seeds, or small household items (NOTE: we don’t recommend them for food products).


IMPORTANT: Certain sizes of BioChar, and other products in our “Gardening and Pets” section, that come from the same supplier, are sold in the original foil bags we receive them in.

Kraft Bedding Bags 

Plain kraft paper bags are used for our hemp tow and shredded cardboard products. This type of paper is excellent as a bedding material in a worm composting system, but can also be added to a layered, backyard composting system as a “brown”.

Pacific Composting Shredded Cardboard

How to Use - These bags can be shredded using a standard paper shredder, or can be partially torn, then “scrunched” into paper balls or mini logs. The “scrunched” paper can be particularly valuable as a false bottom material in typical worm bins, or outdoor systems like our Urbalive In-Ground Worm Composter.

NOTE: Hand-ripped paper and, to a lesser extent, shredded paper tends to mat together once damp, potentially impeding airflow, so it is always recommended to use a variety of bedding materials (with different structural properties) and ensure that they are well mixed. 

 

Polyweave Sandbags

Polyweave Sandbags

We weren’t yet using these bags at the time of publishing this information (July 2024), but we felt it was important to include them since we do have plans to use them in the near future.

On the surface, this type of bag - unlike many of our other choices - might not look very environmentally-friendly, and understandably so. Given their durable and breathable construction, however, these bags can be reused many times over, in a variety of ways.

How to Use - Sandbags are great for temporary compost/castings storage, holding soils, sand or gravel, or could be repurposed as a makeshift plant grow bag or even short-term worm composting system.


Boxes and other Packaging / Packing Supplies

Shipping Boxes

Pacific Composting Box

We use plain brown, corrugated cardboard boxes to ship most of our products. These are fully compostable (in small or large systems), and can also be recycled.

How to Use - Composting worms love corrugated cardboard. So, if you happen to be a vermicomposter, we highly recommend using this material in your systems! It can be shredded using heavy duty cross-cut paper shredders (with a capacity of 20 or more sheets), cut up with a box cutter, or ripped up by hand.

PRO TIP: Soaking cardboard in water makes it much easier to rip up by hand, and it moistens it at the same time (just make sure it is “wrung out sponge” wet, not dripping wet).

IMPORTANT NOTE: Some of our products do include the original glossy, coloured cardboard boxes they arrived in from our suppliers. This glossy, coloured cardboard should be recycled, not composted.


Kraft Wrapping Paper

Pacific Composting Hemp Worm Blanket

Our coco coir bricks and hemp worm blankets are wrapped in thick, brown kraft paper. It is very similar to the kraft paper bags used to hold our loose bedding products, so this material is great for any form of home composting - but especially vermicomposting.

How to Use - This kraft paper can be shredded with a standard paper shredder, or partially torn up and then “scrunched” into balls or mini logs that can be great for moisture-retention and helping to support air movement in a vermicomposting system. It can also be repurposed as wrapping paper, or for some other related use.

Stickers & Tape

Pacific Composting stickers on packages

Our stickers, and the tape we use on the bottom of our boxes, while unfortunately not compostable or reusable, can very easily be removed and they have a very small waste footprint.

Branded Tape

Pacific Composting branded tape for packages

The custom-printed tape we use on our shipping boxes is made from kraft paper, and is fully compostable. Simply pull off, rip up, then add as a “brown” to any worm composting system, or layered backyard (or larger thermophilic) composting system.

Labels

Pacific Composting branded labels

The labels we use for our worm orders are made from a lightweight cardboard that can be composted in any home system. Simply drop them into your system as-is!

NOTE: The string is biodegradable too, but may take a lot longer to fully decompose.

Crinkle Cut Kraft Paper

Pacific Composting crinkle cut paper for shipping

This paper product is used as a padding material in shipping boxes to help keep products from moving around (and potentially getting damaged) while en route to our customers.

How to Use - This is a great ready-to-go vermicomposting bedding material! It can either be added as a thick layer of over bedding, or mixed into the main habitat zone, along with water-rich foods. If you aren’t a vermicomposter, crinkle cut paper can also simply be tossed in a regular composter, where it will help to soak and hold moisture, and balance out N-rich materials.

Printed Promotional / Educational Materials

Rack Cards, Guides & Product Info Sheets

Pacific Composting business cards

All of our printed promotional/educational materials are printed on 100% recycled paper, hemp and/or FSC certified paper. Once you are finished with them (assuming you don’t want to keep them as a handy reference), simply toss them in your recycling bin.

NOTE: Glossy, coloured paper and cardboard, while technically compostable, shouldn’t be added to composting systems, due to the various chemicals used in the printing process.

 

Promotional Giveaway Items

Pacific Composting pencil

We feel it’s very important not only to reward our loyal customers and followers, but to do so in a way that is both environmentally-responsible and also appreciated. So, we refuse to give away anything that is likely to be thrown away! One of our main promo items thus far are pencils from Sproutworld. They are packaged in compostable/recyclable cardboard, and contain viable plant seeds in the bottom. Once you are finished using the pencil, just plant the stub in the ground and watch as new plant life springs forth!

  


Do you know of great compostable, or otherwise earth-friendly, products? Please let us know! We are always looking for ways to improve!


 

Pacific Composting testimonial

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