Did you ever receive a huge box in the lab just to find a tiny vial of reagent inside of it? Odds are that you did -- countless times!
Oversized boxes not only contribute to unnecessary waste in the lab -- they also result in higher CO2 emissions from their transportation.
That's why oversized boxes are no-goes!
SO WHAT CAN YOU DO ABOUT IT?
You could complain about it to your lab mates and friends, cross your fingers and hope that the suppliers will change one day OR YOU CAN MAKE A REAL DIFFERENCE and become a social media packaging activist!
It's easy and impactful -- and here's the recipe:
Every time you receive an oversized box, you post a picture of it on Instagram and/or Twitter, tag the company sending you that package, write something like "This tiny reagent arrived in this huge box/with so much unnecessary packaging today" and add the hashtag #LabWaste.
This way, you can put pressure on the suppliers to change behavior.
Suppliers and manufacturers are much more likely to go green if they know that their customers care about sustainability -- and the suppliers certainly care about negative PR on social media!
If you want to make an extra effort for greener packaging, you can post pictures of styrofoam boxes as well. Tag the suppliers and ask them to phase out styrofoam and use recyclable cold-shipping cardboard boxes instead. NEB and ThermoFischer Scientific are already doing this, so there is no excuse not to roll back styrofoam!