Canadian Packaging

Cleaning Up Our Act


September 22, 2010
by George Guidoni, Editor

Participants in the Canadian Packaging magazine’s Packaging Sustainability roundtable included: (sitting from left) Mario Bellizzi, Sobeys; Guy McGuffin, Walmart Canada; Catherine McVitty, Unilever Canada; Robert Appel, Canpaco, (standing from left) Bob Hagan, Atlantic Packaging Products; John Challinor, Nestlé Waters Canada; Jas Singh, Rogers Connect Research; Andrew Joseph, Features Editor, Canadian Packaging; Eldon Fink, Sun Chemical; Stephen Dean, Publisher, Canadian Packaging; George Guidoni, Editor, Canadian Packaging; Richard McCoy, Sun Chemical.
Photo by Sandra Strangemore

If people really are the product of their environment, then Canadian society clearly has a lot of hard work ahead before it can claim any sort of high global moral ground as a responsible steward of natural resources and a shining beacon of environmental leadership and sustainability.

Which is not to say that it can’t achieve those lofty heights—being blessed with a wealth of technological and human resources to make a profound difference in the noble cause of reversing man-made global ecological degradation—but it will require a far more sweeping, thoughtful, concerted and collective effort by more of Canada’s key CPG (consumer packaged goods) industry stakeholders to make Canadian consumers willing and proactive participants in the ongoing drive to reduce the sector’s vastly oversized environmental footprint.

In fact, it would be a tragic waste of promise and potential if the opportunity for Canadian brand-owners, retailers and packaging manufacturers to build on the early achievements in packaging and manufacturing sustainability to go begging on the account of waning consumer enthusiasm and commitment brought about by a traumatizing economic recession and high-pitched anxiety over near-term economic prospects, according to the general consensus of an authoritative panel of senior industry executives taking part in last month’s Packaging Sustainability roundtable discussion of the Canadian Packaging magazine of Rogers Publishing Limited in Toronto.

Offering their unique takes and insights on the progress made by their respective industry sectors to date—including retailing, manufacturing and packaging—the roundtable panelists also reviewed results from the exclusive industry survey commissioned by the magazine, and carried out by the Rogers Connect Research (see pages 52-56), to determine the true level of green commitment amongst senior management ranks at Canadian-based packaging and retail enterprises.