Amazon Packaging: Less Packaging, More Smiles

Amazon creates a unique take on reusable packaging with the 'Less Packaging, More Smiles' scheme. Cardboard packaging boxes designed to be reused as toys for both kids and pets!

Online retail giant Amazon has just announced a new packaging initiative ‘Less Packaging, More Smiles,’ in which they’ll introduce recyclable delivery boxes with a built-in play factor. The ‘Less Packaging, More Smiles’ scheme will include boxes made from sustainable packaging that can be played with by kids, or cats (!) before being taken to a recycling bin.

The scheme, which is already underway, allows some Amazon orders to be delivered in ‘more environmentally-friendly’ boxes that can then be turned into a fort, car or other playful items. The boxes also include a call to action to encourage customers to recycle the boxes, as well as a QR code that directs them to Amazon’s website for guides on how to make the cardboard creations.

Amazon ‘Less Packaging, More Smiles’. Source:

Six Fun Ways to Reuse your Amazon Packaging

There are six fun ways to reuse one of Amazon’s sustainable boxes if you’re not ready to drop them in the recycling bin:

  • Build a box fort
  • Create a cat condo
  • Make a windmill for a mini-golf course
  • Make a boxcar
  • Make a rocket
  • Create a robot costume
Amazon Packaging- Make a Car
Amazon Packaging- Make a Car! Source:

Why has Amazon introduced the ‘Less Packaging, More Smiles’ scheme?

The initiative is part of the Seattle-based retail giant’s efforts to use less packaging material, and make the material it does use more sustainable. Amazon states that they are committed to making sustainable packaging a top priority and that the scheme is just one of the many ways that they’re working to improve their packaging footprint.

While this is not a solution, it does bring a unique focus on the issues of single-use packaging. This strategy is run alongside more significant schemes to reduce the Amazon packaging footprint, notably being shrinking all Amazon packages to try and fit what customers order most often. 

When their packaging uses less material, weighs less, and is the right size to protect customer orders, Amazon can pack more orders into each delivery. This optimisation results in fewer trips and less fuel burned; all of which minimise their carbon footprint. This comes after the retail giant has received complaints and criticism over their use of packaging; if you’ve ever ordered something small from Amazon, you’ll know that they can be a little overzealous with their packaging!

“We know customers love to get creative and reuse their Amazon packaging in a number of ways, and this inspired us to create these new packaging designs that give customers an easy way to learn how we’re making our packaging better.” 

What other sustainability initiatives have Amazon committed to?

Amazon reiterated that they remain steadfast in their focus on meeting their The Climate Pledge, the retail giant’s commitment to reduce their carbon footprint and become net-zero carbon by 2040.

Amazon 2040 Climate Pledge
Amazon 2040 Climate Pledge. Source:

Aside from the ‘Less packaging, More Smiles’ initiative, Amazon also recently announced that they are creating a $2 billion venture-capital fund to focus on technology investments that will reduce the impact of climate change. The retailer has said that it will direct the money towards entrepreneurial logistics, energy creation, battery storage, manufacturing, alongside food and agriculture.

“Inventing and innovating in new types of packaging is one of the many actions we are taking as part of The Climate Pledge, our commitment to become net-zero carbon by 2040, 10 years ahead of the Paris Agreement. Over the years, we’ve reduced the weight of our packaging by 33% and eliminated more than 880,000 tons of packaging material, which is equivalent to about 1.5 billion shipping boxes.”

Kim Houchens, Director of Customer Packaging Experience, Amazon

In its Climate Pledge, Amazon said it would work toward using 100% renewable energy by 2030 and also placed a big order for electric delivery vans supplied by electric-manufacturer Rivian. For more information on what sustainable measures Amazon is undertaking, you can visit their website here.

Further Reading: Flora & Fauna ‘Take It Back’ Campaign. Read More

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