Corporate sustainability: business practices and industry norms

Corporate sustainability encompasses the implementation of strategies and initiatives that place paramount importance on long-term environmental, social, and economic well-being. This holistic approach not only safeguards our planet but also establishes the financial resilience of businesses operating within these parameters. In this article, we will delve into the sustainability practices specifically in the realm of manufacturing sustainable plastics.


Although Gaborone is only 360km from Johannesburg, loadshedding does not seem to affect life in Botswana the way it does in South Africa. With most of its electricity being produced by coal-fired power stations – and a small percentage sourced from other Southern African countries – Botswana has only experienced one period of occasional blackouts since 2015. However, South Africa, as we know, has a completely different experience.

In fact, since September 2022, every month has been in crisis mode with March 2023 the only sign of improvement. This puts a lot of pressure on businesses, as productivity is interrupted and reduced to certain times of the day. Loadshedding during material extrusion would burst the bubble of film and cause a lot of waste, not to mention the time it takes for the heaters to cool-down and warm-up again once power is restored. Luckily, we are only rarely affected by loadshedding and therefore, production runs smoothly and our deadlines are more consistently met.

Barrier films

Being in the barrier-film industry, ensuring barrier quality and product dependability are two of the most significant factors. The main barriers would be nylon, EVOH, or a combination of the two for more complex barrier-films. To us, the industry standard has always been 8µ (I.e., micron/thickness) nylon in 70µ vacuum bags, which maintains the OTR (oxygen transmission rate) and therefore, the shelf-life of the packaged goods. This is essential as any factors that impact the shelf-life of the product can lead to loss of sales, wasted goods, reputation, and health concerns.

As part of our R&D, we conduct regular laboratory tests of various products in our industry; we need to compare what we know of our potential clients’ needs in comparison to what they are being supplied. The lab tests, on several occasions, have revealed that the packaging in use is different to what has been reported, or less than the industry standard. For example, tests on vacuum bag material have shown a reduction from 8µ to 6µ nylon, which would ultimately impact barrier properties. Although it might be sufficient for certain goods or within some food logistics in the supply chain, it is important to understand what one’s need is compared to what is being received.

Technical expertise

As you will notice on our website, we have stated that we have 40 years of experience in the flexible film industry. In addition, Sun Plastics is the heart of a group of companies that operates in several South African countries, which all contribute towards the various packaging requirements in our region. While our world-class facility hosts a range of modern machinery and BRC processes, the people behind the company are just as important.

That being said, Sun Plastics offers:

  • A skilled sales force
  • Expert operation managers in print, production, and quality control
  • An internationally educated CEO with a dynamic approach to management, production, and business development
  • A hands-on approach to new business development and a constant drive to pursue the most innovative product solutions
  • A consultant with 40 years’ experience in the packaging industry as well as technical experience in food packaging systems
  • A marketing programme dedicated to providing industry knowledge, relevant information on packaging sustainability, and driving the mission of the company

We are committed to delivering exceptional sustainable packaging solutions while upholding the highest standards of product quality. We invite you to explore our diverse range of products and discover how we can revolutionise your experience.