100% of our designers are now trained in our Circular Design Principles

Today we can proudly announce that we have achieved another of our Now and Next Sustainability targets; training 100% of DS Smith’s designers, across 26 countries in our Circular Design Principles.

What are the Circular Design Principles?

To a large extent, the environmental impact of a product is determined during the design stage, from the materials used to the way the products are manufactured; this is why we collaborated with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation to design the Circular Design Principles in 2020.

The principles look at 5 areas where circularity can be applied to the design process:

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Our Now and Next Sustainability target

Our Now and Next Sustainability Strategy set a target of training 100% of our designers in our Circular Design Principles to help us deliver packaging solutions that are circular ready.

These principles help our Designers adopt a re-use, return, repurpose and recycle mindset  during the design stage and encourages them to follow our Materials Hierarchy, where 100% of our solutions are reusable or recyclable and are fully optimised for our customer supply chains.

Circular design 'is the new frontier of opportunity’ according to Joe Iles, Circular Design Programme Lead for the Ellen MacArthur Foundation. These principles  go beyond recyclability alone, and look at regenerative sourcing and re-use models, shifting us away from the take, make, waste — or linear — system that we have today.

They offer a radical re-wiring of the way we create our products, always designing with the end use in mind.

"The Circular Design Principles translate the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s circular economy model into practical techniques, tools and process that we can use everyday to support our customers’ transition to more circular packaging solutions. By training 100% of our designers in these principles we set the industry standard for design and innovation. We can proudly claim that from the start of the design process we are working towards our Purpose, ‘Redefining Packaging for a Changing World’, creating exciting new products which tackle the sustainability challenges we face Now and Next."

— Alan Potts, Design and Innovation Director

Our partnership with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation

This May we celebrate two years of being a Strategic Partner of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation. Since establishing this partnership in 2018, our efforts to support the transition to the Circular Economy have continued to strengthen. Our designers were trained in the Circular Design Principles with the support of the Foundation.