Amazon says it will stop sending out tiny items in huge boxes

Amazon Pantry Delivery Box SMIt’s tough being Britain’s biggest online retailer sending out more parcels than anyone else. It means you’re under the spotlight. And with Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall waging “war on waste” in a new TV show, they were bound to come under fire for using too much cardboard and possibly even creating a “cardboard crisis”.

And you’ve probably had an experience like me, where a small item come in unnecessary packaging. My most recent experience was last week when I bought a belt on Amazon and it came in a box that would easily have contained a couple of boxes of cereal. A leather belt is pretty unbreakable and a jiffy style bag would have sufficed.

And under the pressure of criticism Amazon looks like it’s making efforts to match items with appropriate packaging and reduce waste whilst also claiming it gets it right most of the time.

They’re developing a system called Box on Demand that will ensure items are sent in packaging matching their dimensions. The system could be in place in Europe over the next 12 months but it could take longer as it’s only at a nascent, pilot stage.

Richard Mcilwaine of Keep Britain Tidy says: “Amazon definitely need to resolve their packaging because there are clearly examples where they are over-packaging. They are the biggest online retailer, therefore anything they can do to tackle over-packaging should be congratulated. But they are not the only ones, let’s see others follow suit.”