Packaged with the Environment in Mind

Green Product Packaging

Lenovo is committed to offering environmentally preferable packaging for its products. Over the past several years, Lenovo has had a strong focus on increasing the use of recycled and recyclable materials in packaging, reducing the size of packaging, and expanding the use of bulk and reusable packaging solutions. Since 2008, Lenovo has totally eliminated over 1000 tons of packaging consumption by weight through design optimization and refinement across all Lenovo product shipments.

Beginning in 2008 with the ThinkCentre M58/58p ECO USFF desktop PC, Lenovo has implemented the use of 100% recycled and recyclable packaging material on many products. The new packaging material, made from 100 percent recycled thermoformed cushions, enables PCs to be stacked together and requires less packaging material. This new material also helps minimize shipping costs. In addition, on many Lenovo notebook product lines Lenovo has implemented the use of 100% post-consumer molded fiber (paper pulp) packaging, which can typically be readily recycled in municipal waste streams. Lenovo discourages the use of polystyrene packaging wherever possible, and encourages the use of molded pulp and fiber and LDPE. For more information about the process for making and recycling LDPE thermoformed cushions, click here.

Lenovo continues to drive increases in the use of recycled content materials in product packaging. For example, all Think product primary carton boxes are certified to contain a minimum of 50% post-consumer fiber content and required to use the maximum available post-consumer material where adequate supplies exist (without compromising required performance characteristics). For overall corrugated box packaging, the recycled content averages more than 70%. Lenovo has also transitioned 95% of ThinkPad and 20% of ThinkCentre products to recycled cushioning materials, with the ThinkPad Edge using 100% recycled cushioning materials. Printing on boxes is done via flexography with water-based, non-toxic, RoHS compliant inks.

Lenovo has a strong focus on size reductions in our packaging to minimize the amount of materials used while maintaining adequate protection for our products. Smaller packages also contribute to increase pallet density; in many cases Lenovo has been able to increase pallet density by over 33%.

Lenovo has also eliminated the use of multi-page user manuals shipped with many of our products. For example, with our line of PC options and accessories, Lenovo was able to condense 50 page user manuals into one page posters. This single action has allowed Lenovo to save approximately 350 million printed pages per year.

Packaging Objectives and Targets

Packaging has been identified as a significant environmental aspect of Lenovo's operations, and as a result remains a focus item under Lenovo's environmental management system (EMS). For FY12/13, Lenovo's primary EMS Packaging objective is to "Minimize the consumption of packaging material while driving the use of environmentally sustainable materials. Targets in support of this objective are as follows:

  • Increase the use of environmentally friendly packaging materials in a minimum of 12 products by December 31, 2012.
  • Reduce the quantity of packaging material used for a minimum of 5 products by March 31, 2013.
  • Increase the package pallet density by at least 15% for two products by March 31, 2013.
  • Implement at least two innovative customer reuse applications for Lenovo product packaging.

Packaging Specifications

Lenovo communicates packaging environmental requirements to suppliers via a series of packaging specifications. These specifications include requirements for minimum amounts of recycled content, marking for proper recycling, banned materials, etc. All corrugated container (box) packaging should use a minimum of 50% post-consumer recycled fiber and all paperboard packaging should contain a minimum of 45% post-consumer recycled fiber and 100% recovered fiber. In addition to meeting these specifications, many Lenovo packaging suppliers provide FSC certified products for Lenovo packaging. Lenovo is currently in the process of assessing the global availability of FSC certified packaging to support manufacturing facilities in all geographies.

Bulk Packaging

Bulk packaging and reusable bulk packaging may be available for many of Lenovo's products. Contact your sales rep or environment@lenovo.com for more information.

Reusable bulk packaging

Reusable packaging in use in Lenovo manufacturing

To learn more about Lenovo's green packaging innovations and achievements in this area, please read the Lenovo Packaging Whitepaper.