Amazon has announced that all its delivery packaging in Europe is now recyclable.
It encompasses items sold by the retailer and third party partners through Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA).
As well as ordinary packaging, customers are able to receive packages in flexible paper bags, cardboard envelopes and corrugated iron boxes – all of which are easily recyclable.
Amazon is also using machine learning in order to help the company determine which smaller products are suitable for flexible packaging like paper bags, which are up to 90% lighter than similar-sized boxes.
Over the past five years the algorithm has already helped the retailer reduce its use of cardboard boxes by more than 35%.
It comes as over the past year the retailer has grown the number of products shipped without any Amazon packaging by more than 50% in Europe.
Subscribe to Sustainability Beat for free
In addition, Amazon’s is trialling new packaging machines in Europe that build made-to-fit paper bags around individual items on demand and help reduce the volume of packaging for thousands of everyday items.
Through combining these initiatives Amazon has avoided the use of over 1 billion single-use plastic delivery bags from within its distribution network since 2019.
It comes as retailers have been criticised about the impact of Black Friday, which typically sees an uptick in carbon intensive deliveries and therefore emissions.
“We’re excited that our European fulfilment network is now using recyclable packaging for customer orders,” said Mechatronics VP Pat Lindner.
“This is part of our long-term work to be a leader in sustainability, and we’ll continue to invest in innovative technology, machine learning, and more sustainable materials to ensure packaging is good for our customers, communities, and the planet,” she continued.