Replacing 1 billion pieces (and counting) of plastic with sustainable packaging solutions

In partnership with some of the world's most iconic FMCG brands, we have been leading the plastic replacement fight. Since 2020, we have replaced over 1 billion everyday plastic items from supermarket shelves, including fruit and vegetable punnets, plastic carriers, and shrink wrap found on soft drink bottles.

25% of consumers are actively against plastic and 41% want packaging made from alternative renewable sources.  As consumer demand for plastic replacement continues to grow, we are 100% dedicated to helping our customers find innovative solutions.  

How can we help you?

We can help you solve your challenges and find solutions for ‘single-use’ and ‘hard-to-recycle’ packaging.  80% of any product's environmental impact is determined by its design so we have trained around 800 designers on the principles of circular design.  Our ground-breaking Circular Design Metrics make it easy to compare the sustainability performance of different packaging designs across 8 indicators.  

We have already created over 1,000 designs for millions of products geared towards reducing the use of problem plastics. Replacing one billion pieces of plastic is just the beginning – not the end goal. Our vision extends beyond sustainable packaging to innovative and interactive packaging, enhanced with cutting-edge technologies. We are excited about the future possibilities and the positive impact we can create.  

Our journey to replacing 1 billion pieces of plastics

Our plastic replacement programme launched in 2020 as part of our Now & Next Sustainability Strategy. We are delighted to have delivered on this target over a year early through the determination and responsiveness of our colleagues and customers and by embracing circular economy design principles. 

 This video highlights our firm commitment to meeting the increasing consumer demand for sustainable alternatives to plastic and explains how we have incorporated circular design thinking into the packaging design process.

Our Now & Next strategy drives environmental change by helping our customers replace plastics. I am proud of our people for meeting the target a year early. This is just the start. We will support customers and communities to deliver further positive impacts.

Miles Roberts
Group Chief Executive, DS Smith


*Our plastic replacement target concerned any primary or secondary plastic packaging that has now been reduced or completely removed from customers’ packaging as a direct result of DS Smith’s solution.

**Any plastic, whether from the customer’s primary or secondary packaging, that has now been reduced in volume or completely removed from the customer’s existing packaging as a direct result of DS Smith’s “plastic replacement” packaging solution, is considered within scope of this target. Plastics include, but are not limited to: HDPE, LDPE, LLDPE, PA (nylon), PE-maleic anhydride, PET, PP, PP orientated, PS, PU, PVC, Foams (e.g. EPE, EPS, EPU), and Laminates.