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Tool for designing reusable products & packaging

Quick scan tool for designing reusable products & packaging

This tool is developed for companies that want to move away from selling products and packaging that have a short lifespan and are not reusable. Changing towards a climate-friendly reusable approach requires careful consideration. This tool is useful for shaping your thoughts preliminary to starting the product design phase on reuse. It helps you gain a basic understanding of the impact on your business, for instance on the business model, organizational and operation set-up, but also provides considerations around reducing the environmental impact of your new reusable product or packaging.

This tool is most useful after coming up with a rough outline of the product or packaging you want put on the market. For instance, when you have developed a new idea at the end of an ideation workshop. At that point you want to know what the you should consider going forward. This tool will help you along on that journey and provides a list of aspects to take into account. This will help you in detailing a more comprehensive project plan or to draft a list of actions to take going forward, which you can use for convincing your executive team.

By filling out the short questionnaire below a specific reuse scenario is presented (a total of 7 scenarios are included) based on the answers provided. Once you select your scenario a brief overview of the reuse concept is shown with a schematic overview of the model. Additionally, example products or packaging have been listed as reference material on the right side of the screen.

The actual body of knowledge, included in each scenario, details a number of key aspects (accessible through dropdown menus) for your consideration. Each aspect helps to shape your thinking and increase your awareness of the choice you can make and how it will impact your business and environmental performance. Aspects that have been included are: design choices, supply chain impact, user experience, business model consideration ad a section on the end-of-life.

The diagram below outlines the main reuse approaches that have been included in this tool for designing either reusable products or packaging. The questionnaire at bottom of this page will guide you to make the relevant choices in accordance with this diagram.

reuses approaches

The tool assumes that you have some basic understanding of the product development process, and therefore focusses more on how to design in way that is conductive to reusability and to taking care of the afterlife of your new product or packaging.

The suggestions that focus on operational and business aspects have been included after conducting interviews with practitioners and startup. These companies and experts have given us their insights to include as learnings, and their experience can help you getting a head start. However, keep in mind that there are many ways forward and that the information in this tool is not meant to be exhaustive in any respect.

The tool is only available on desktops and tablets, not on phones.

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Call with our consultant

Do you want to know more about how we can help? Schedule a call with one of our consultants to ask your questions.

Questionnaire tool

Fill in the multiple choice questions to select your outcome and be directed to the scenario that is relevant for your case.

eCircular Tool
Do you intend to develop a new product or a packaging solution? *
Do you want your product to be used over the course of multiple lifecycles or do you want to make a product more durable and extend its first lifecycle? *
Is your intention to make a reusable product or a consumable product that can be refilled? *
Do you want to support your reusable product by offering an inclusive service model with a reoccurring fee or do you want to let your customers pay for the product and then separately offer maintenance and repair or refurbishment options? *
Do you want to restock your consumable product centrally or do you want to support home refilling by the end-consumer? *
Do you want to support reusability of your packaging by offering an inclusive service model with a reoccurring fee or do you want to make a packaging more durable and extend its first lifecycle? *


This tool has been developed with financial support of EIT Climate-KIC, and in collaboration with the eCircular consortium and the Versnellingshuis CE.

Disclaimer: the information presented in this tool uses a framework developed by Ecomatters B.V., which is created with the utmost care and consideration. The results presented come without any form of warranty and/ or claim to correctness. The information should not be interpreted as an advice from Ecomatters B.V. and no rights can be derived from information contained in the tool. Ecomatters B.V. does not accept any liability for the correctness and completeness of the information and content and the direct or indirect consequences of acting or failing to act on it.

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