Can we get recyclable packaging?


#1

Hi, I love huel a lot!
I’m wondering is there any way for you guys to use recyclable packaging
As if you use huel alot, the waste adds up, all those bags!

Thanks


Recyclable tubs?
#2

@Jonty_Thomas it is certainly our aim to provide recycling packaging. We have researched a great deal but currently we have been unable to find a suitable recyclable material that provides the required level of protection for our ingredients, especially the vit and mineral blend. We will keep looking.


#3

My thought was to use tetrapak.

Something like a 1 litre fruit juice carton, but 2 or 3 times longer. Perhaps you could get a custom designed tetrapak carton, which just fits inside a custom designed cardboard box for shipping, which just fits through most letterboxes.

I think such a thing could be big enough to fit about the same amount of powder as a bag currently does.

In this scenario you would probably want to get rid of the requirement for packaging to be resealable. Instead people could just use their tupperware, and you could also sell containers designed just for the purpose of transferring Huel into after opening.

(And probably keep the throwaway resealable bags as a purchasing option too.)

And I suppose everything I’ve said based upon the idea of a tetrapak container could also work instead for plastic, or even metal (like a giant tin of corned beef!).


#4

After all, it’s not like the current resealable bags are perfect …


#5

I did consider tetrapak but like pouches they are made from composite material so it’s not always to recycle them. The paper is lined with foil as per our pouch.


#6

Hi Julian,
I was wondering if you made any more progress or done any more research into this now? Still going strong with the huel for breakfast and lunch and mid afternoon!


Ambronite meal pouches
#7

Hi Jonty,

We did look into it, a lot, but there wasn’t suitable packaging that was recyclable and provided the right performance. Yes we could have moved to recyclable packaging but it would have been less strong and/or less protective for the vitamins and minerals, and would have resulted in more product spoiling which would have been worst for the environment.

We are switching to a new pouch, which is smaller so there will less waste. See below:

Plus If you consumed Huel at 2000kcal per day for 96 years, this is the amount of rubbish you would produce. Which would probably fit in two wheelie bins.


#8

you could issue subscribers with re-usable containers, they would get 2+ and would send one back for refill whilst the other is being - or you could even offer it to users to send their own containers in.


#9

Hi Julian,
Thankyou very much for your response! Great customer service and that really isn’t as much waste as I expected!


#10

Is there any progress to report on this?

The problem with plastics is that in most environments it never goes away, it just breaks down into dangerous microscopic particles. That neat pile of bags will eventually be spread far and wide. “The presence of microplastics in commercial salts from different countries

There’s some hope that scientists can find and cultivate bacteria that will safely eat all of the varieties of our plastic waste, but that might be some time away. “Scientists Just Discovered Plastic-Eating Bacteria That Can Break Down PET

And I know that consuming Huel leaves far less of a footprint than a typical western diet, there is that, I would just love for Huel to fix this.

@Julian, have you seen WRAP’s Recycling of laminated packaging report (PDF)? I’ve only glanced over it, but it seems like any developments will take some years to come to anything.

How about a compromise? Anyone with a subscription isn’t leaving Huel around for many months, they’ve committed to and built their life around Huel. Subscribers could have an option of lighter or even readily recyclable packaging.


#11

We are still looking at it, but a practical solution is not available at the moment. One of the main issues is strength, even our current strong composite pouch burst sometime whilst in the hands of the courier, which is out of our control. We have to be very careful not to switch to recyclable packaging, which could actually create more waste because it bursts open more often.

We have a meeting with the manufacturer and he is working on it.


#12

Some local councils recycle tetra packs at their recycling centres. So I’ve been taking my Huel pouches there and putting them in the tetra pack containers since I understand the Huel pouches are made of same/similar materials.

I’d appreciate if anyone from Huel folks could give any input on whether this is a good idea or not? I’ll also check at the recycling centre next time I go, but would be good to hear from Huel folks too.

I’m a +1 on returnable non-disposable containers. Its pretty ahead of the curve, but likely that a lot of things will be sold like this as resources become less scarce.

Thank you


#13

Returnable containers would be far worse - the emissions created and resources used for packaging them up and shipping them back would outweigh the benefits. As you can see in the about picture - a lifetime of Huel creates an absolute minute amount of waste.


#14

Really? Based on what figures?


#15

There are definitely avenues we are looking into. I agree that returnable pouches wouldn’t be the solution though. I assure you we are trying to find ways to make our packaging more environmentally friendly whilst balancing that with other sorts of emissions and also keeping our food waste to a minimum. The benefits of our current pouches being that they give Huel a 12 month shelf life.


#16

Hello people of Huel

Well done on your funding!
With all the research going on into materials like PLA or PHA that can be composted in industrial composters, I wondered if you guys had made any progress?

Chris