In 2020, The Home Depot announced its commitment to eliminating expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam and polyvinyl chloride (PVC) film from private-label packages by 2023. While they are inexpensive and easy to use, EPS and PVC are considered hard-to-recycle plastics.
The Home Depot’s packaging team works with our private label product suppliers to apply science to creating better packages. Our goal is to reduce package footprints and use more sustainable materials to secure and protect the private-label products we sell.
Sustainable Packaging in Action
In 2021, our packaging team continued to innovate as they undertook a large project aimed at reducing packaging across our Crown Bolt products, Home Depot’s private brand of fasteners and building hardware. This project touched over 16 million packaging units, across nearly 300 SKUs. Our packaging innovations not only eliminated hard-to-recycle plastics, but they also increased shipping efficiency and decreased product damage. That’s good for the planet and our business.
2021 by the Numbers
- 286 packages were redesigned to reduce size and materials
- 274,600 cubic feet of EPS foam was removed from our private-label packaging–– enough to fill 138 school buses
- 1,119,700 square feet of PVC film was eliminated–– enough to cover 19 football fields
We continually look across our private-label products to find even the smallest amounts of EPS and replace it with easier-to-recycle materials like molded pulp and paper. Even before The Home Depot announced its commitment to eliminating EPS and PVC from private label packaging, our packaging engineers were working behind the scenes to improve our packaging. From 2017 through 2021, our packaging innovations allowed us to redesign 652 packages to reduce size and materials.
The Redesign of ECOSMART® LED Bulb Packaging
Our practice of engaging with our stakeholders on ESG topics helped us design a more sustainable packaging solution for some of our LED lightbulbs. In response to customer feedback, we have sought to remove the excess plastic from our ECOSMART® LED bulb packaging. In this regard, our packaging team went to work looking for a new way to package the bulbs without the need for plastic. The redesign that our packaging team came up with helped eliminate the need for plastic in the packaging, while also reducing the size of the box.