By  on August 10, 2007

Corn, soy and sun may sound like the perfect elements of a Midwestern landscape. But, more and more, such formulas are coming to define cosmetics packaging.As manufacturers in the beauty industry become more environmentally conscious—and concern about climate change helps mold consumer demand for more earth-friendly products—packaging suppliers have keyed in on one concept: sustainability.The idea is beginning to change the types of materials used to make cosmetics tubes, bottles and cartons. In this area, manufacturers are looking at renewable resources like cornstarch-based plastics and soy-based inks. They are also reducing the amount of newly sourced—or virgin—plastics they use by employing recycled materials, which reduces the amount of material entering landfills each year.This sustainability mind-set is also leading manufacturers to seek alternative energy sources, such as wind, water and solar power.

Agricultural crops like corn are becoming a popular source of packaging material, according to Nicole Smith, the environmental director of New York-based Design & Source Productions Inc.“In general, you’re going to see a turn to bio-plastics because there’s a lot of research and technology going into it,” she says. “Companies want to show their consumers that they are aware of issues in the environment.”

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