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How removing sell-by dates can enhance sustainability and transform cosmetic industry standards


The food and beverage industry is currently dominated by discussion around the use of sell-by dates and whether they should be scrapped in favour of smart packaging solutions.

Removing sell-by dates is a topic that is also extending into other industries, including the beauty and cosmetics sector, as they have previously dictated product usage timelines and lead to unnecessary waste.

Steve Brownett-Gale of Lifestyle Packaging reveals how abandoning sell-by dates can boost sustainability efforts to meet waste reduction targets, lead to industry regulation changes in product testing packaging, drive packaging innovation and reshape consumer trust in organisations.

Improved sustainability efforts

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·       It is estimated that over 120 billion pieces of beauty packaging and products are disposed of every year.

·       Explore how the removal of sell-by dates can reduce waste by extending product usage timelines, establishing efficient production cycles and enhancing recycling programs.

Regulation changes in product stability and testing

·       Consider how the removal of sell-by dates may lead to regulatory changes and how businesses may need to adapt to new product stability and testing guidelines.

·       Explore the role of preserving ingredients in cosmetics and the importance of maintaining product integrity without sell-by dates.

New opportunities for innovative packaging

·       Highlight how the removal of standard sell-by dates can provide opportunities for using more innovative packaging and formulations that enhance product longevity.

·       Organisations can consider advanced preservation packaging, smart packaging, enhanced barrier materials, antimicrobial solutions and other innovative design features.

Maintaining consumer trust

·       Discuss how removing sell-by dates could impact consumer confidence in product safety and efficacy and how businesses can maintain transparency and trust.

·       Companies should prioritise clear communication via transparent labelling featuring certifications, share quality assurance protocols, provide product performance guarantees, and access to educational resources.

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