Kocoatrait, the Indian chocolate bar brand, is enabling consumers to return their fiber-based bar wrappers directly to the brand for recycling into new wrappers. The consumer pays for the postage to return the packaging, while Kocoatrait covers the costs to store and ship the returned wrappers to its packaging suppliers.
“We view these costs as investments – and not as pure costs – into building an [environmentally] sustainable planet for our future generation. There are no additional costs or savings because the returned wrappers serve as a raw material for the upcycling of a new future set of wrappers.” said L Nitin Chordia, co-founder of Kocoatrait.
According to Innova Market Insights, 71% of Indian consumers are willing to pay more for environmentally friendly packaging, and 78% are even willing to switch their usual brands for a brand with more environmentally sustainable packaging.
“This will help us build brand loyalty among an increasing and new set of conscious consumers, but more importantly, set a precedent for bean-to-bar chocolate makers in India to follow,” says Chordia.
Kocoatrait’s wrappers only use water-based inks to make them biodegradable, compostable and recyclable, and the recycling of an already upcycled wrapper has “probably never been done before,” maintains Chordia.
The wrapper is upcycled using reclaimed cotton from garment factories and reclaimed cocoa shells, a byproduct of its roasting process. It is free from both plastic and paper. Additionally, the company uses a packaging mold that ensures minimal waste: “We pride ourselves on using the same wrapper size as the chocolate bar. We do not enclose a smaller bar of chocolate in a large wrapper to make the chocolate look bigger than it actually is. This is a common practice in the industry,” says Chordia. “With Kocoatrait, what you see is what you get.”
“Additionally, the amount of energy and the forms of energy used must be economized and optimized. Both have a direct relationship with the chocolate packaging and impact the decisions conscious brands like Kocoatrait take,” says Chordia. “We have just started and there is a lot more to be achieved in this space,” Chordia concludes.