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Friday, January 28, 2011

Guest Post: Protect Your Stuff and Your Conscience: Packing Valuables With Eco-Friendly Materials

Getting your possessions from point A to point B can be stressful, and worrying about your valuables getting there safely can magnify that stress exponentially.  Factor in the decision to try to move in an environmentally conscious way and it sounds like a whole lot of pressure. Relax, it doesn't have to be that bad; there are a number of professional moving companies that can help you move your goods, safely and thoughtfully.

Some of your valuables may need a little more padding than your socks, shirts and towels can provide. Grandma’s china, your wedding crystal, and that piece of art that cost you about two months salary, to name a few. It is understandable that you want to make sure that these valuables are as safeguarded as possible during their journey. Sometimes you have to use a protective wrapping, and the good news is that there are companies that make it out of recycled material. This green cushioning material works like bubble wrap, but it is plastic free and is recyclable with mixed papers. This eco-friendly material uses a honeycomb texture to provide cushioning, and can be wrapped tightly to conform to angles and protect the fine details of your valuables.

If you are still not convinced that your treasures are safe enough even in protective wrapping, consider recyclable packing peanuts for your more precious items. Traditional packing peanuts are made of Styrofoam, which makes up 30 percent of material in landfills, leaches toxic chemicals into the earth, and also contributes to offgassing. This can’t be the lasting impact you want your valuables to have on this earth! Especially when there are biodegradable, eco-friendly options. Not only are many recycled packing peanuts made without petrochemicals, they are also compost-able and dissolve into proteins that are easily absorbed by soil when combined with water. Please note: some of these “recycled” packing peanuts are simply left over or re-used Styrofoam packaging. Make sure you are buying biodegradable packing peanuts for your small move.

Finally, if you just can’t find quality boxes at your local liquor or grocery store, your friends don’t have enough plastic containers for you to borrow, and none of the shipping companies that rent sturdy plastic boxes are located in your area, you may need to buy some cardboard boxes to move your valuables. The good news is...
that you have recycled options for these as well. Companies are now selling used moving boxes that provide sturdy, handled packaging in every size imaginable delivered to your door for low, ground rate shipping costs.  These companies are helping to prevent the more than 21 million trees that would be destroyed if every moving box used in America was simply thrown away in the past year. What is more, many of these companies will even buy back your boxes or arrange for free pickup once you are done with your move.

Moving is a challenging event for anyone, involving lots of lists, planning, and packing. If you already have a full day’s worth of work to get done, these details add a lot of extra work and thought onto an already stressful day. If you are worried about moving your valuables, consider using some eco-friendly options to keep your prized possessions protected. Then at least your conscience will be one less thing to worry about during your move!

Author Bio:
Kevin Hagan is the marketing manager at TSI, a nationwide moving and shipping company specializing in furniture delivery and small move assistance. TSI is a common carrier that offers furniture shipping and freight services, with a variety of options available for long distance moves.
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AB HOME Interiors said...

As a business owner I save everything that comes on our dock. We have an online store and when people make purchases I think they expect to shiny, clean new boxes. Nope. We reuse and recycle everything. We keep all packing material, peanuts, boxes paper everything! And sure it's not as pretty as a shiny new designer looking box, but it is one thing that I can very easily do to prevent waste.

panamamama said...

When we lived overseas my grandma would send stuff to us with popped popcorn for packing filler. Worked great and we could feed it to the birds!

Elena said...

@AB Home Interiors- I get really excited when I hear of businesses reusing and recycling. I love it when I find shredded newspaper or other reused packing materials when I open my package. Thanks for stopping by!

Elena said...

@Panamamama- Your grandma sounds a lot like mine. She was very creative. Using popped popcorn as packing material is such a novel idea! I love it! Thanks for sharing :)