IKEA is now scouting for potential start-ups to join a Packaging Innovation Accelerator Program to tackle these challenges. Through this program, IKEA aims to collaborate with start-ups to find sustainable and innovative solutions and accelerate packaging development.
"I would argue that we are experts on cardboard, but what alternatives are there in five to ten years? We are searching for future materials and early-stage companies with solutions for new materials or ways to use less material giving the same protection. Here we would like to help drive a more sustainable industry standard", says Erik.
For the second challenge, Erik and his team are looking to find a solution for customers choosing click & deliver. In other words, when you buy online and choose to get the products delivered to your home.
"Today, we take products from a store or a central fulfilment unit, wrap them in cardboard and put it in a box. Or we take a product that's already in a box and put it in another box. E-commerce challenges our existing packaging solutions, but I think there are smarter and more sustainable solutions for this sales channel that has emerged during the pandemic. Here we would like to co-create and get challenged by start-ups".