Puma’s Clever Little Shoe Bags
By Bernice Hurst, Contributing Editor, RetailWire
And so another old friend may bite the dust as Puma announces a new design
for its shoeboxes. In the future, customers will receive shoes packed in “cardboard
frames wrapped in reusable shoe bags called the ‘Clever Little Bag.'”
Introduced and illustrated on the company’s website, the new design should
start appearing in the second half of next year.
The Daily Telegraph reports the footwear maker expects to eventually
save 8,500 tons of paper each year, cut its carbon footprint by saving 20m
megajoules of electricity as well as reducing by 60 percent the water and energy
used during production. This expectation is tempered by an admission from Puma
chief executive Jochen Zeitz that although the “switch to sustainable
packaging will be cost neutral in the mid to long term … the packaging
would impose higher costs in the short term because sustainable materials still
cost more than unsustainable materials.”
Puma boasts that the new design is a result of “more than 2,000 ideas
and 40-plus packaging prototypes” considered and rejected during a 21-month
development period. And despite initial additional costs, the fact that the
new style will ultimately be both “eco-friendly” and “sustainable,” apparently
resolves company concerns.
“Boxes are everywhere, boxes have been
around longer than the wheel, our lives are filled with them, we work in boxes.
For a long time boxes made our lives easier. But at some point boxes became
a problem,” as Puma’s statement explains.
The Telegraph bemoaned the demise of cardboard shoe boxes used as “mini-depositories
for love letters, bric-a-brac and photographs … leaving attics around the
world … significantly messier.”
But famed industrial designer Yves Behar, who led the packaging redesign,
said in a statement that he hopes others follow their lead.
“Puma’s initiative to look closely at one of the most challenging issues
facing the retail industry in regards to sustainability and environmental harm
was inspirational,” said Mr. Behar. “In changing the packaging and
distribution life cycle from the ground up, we hope our new design and comprehensive
solution encourages other retail companies to follow suit.”
Discussion Questions: Are consumers ready for reusable shoe bags to replace
cardboard shoeboxes? What other products do you think may significantly change
traditional packaging styles?
- PUMA.Safe Launches New Sustainable Packaging Designed by Yves Behar – Puma
- Puma ditches the shoe box for a greener ‘Clever Little Bag’ – Daily
- Puma saying goodbye to shoe boxes – Reuters