Over the last 50 years plastic use worldwide has increased around twentyfold, but recycling rates remain low at around 9%.1 This has contributed to increased pollution of the world’s oceans, a matter of growing urgent concern. Action is needed now to reverse course and protect endangered marine ecosystems. That’s why, in 2020, Sony Corporation established the “Green Management 2025” plan following on from its launch of the “One Blue Ocean Project”. This includes a commitment to eliminate plastic use in newly designed small product packaging by 2025, and reduce the quantity of plastic packaging by 10% for other products. Today, we want to tell you more about our progress at Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE) and why the newly launched PlayStation 5 console packaging might look different compared to previous PlayStation packaging.

Over the last few years, we implemented a number of steps to address plastic use in our packaging. For example, in the PlayStation 4 peripheral packaging, such as the DUALSHOCK 4 wireless controller, we used around 70% recycled PET plastic for display windows and hanging hooks within our North and South American and European markets where these recycled materials are readily available for local bundling. To meet the ambition of Sony’s new commitments, we decided to go further for the launch of our PS5 product offerings.

PlayStation 5 Packaging: Recyclable Materials and Reduced Plastic

The materials used for the PS5 console and accessories packaging are designed to be recyclable, and depending on the product, PS5 packaging per unit is between 93-99% plastic-free overall (by weight). Whilst we know there is still work to be done, there are a number of improvements we implemented to achieve this: 

  • Avoiding expanded polystyrene or plastic trays by using card inserts and paper pulp cushion trays 
  • Replacing plastic cable ties with paper cable ties 
  • Eliminating plastic protection bags used for cables and instruction manuals where feasible
  • Substituting plastic display windows for closed card boxes for PS5 accessories
  • Incorporating folding, rather than glued, hanger tabs to outer packaging

Additionally in 2021, we will be testing the inclusion of polypropylene recycled from post-industrial waste in our physical game cases in Europe. 

We will continue to review innovations and technical possibilities to address plastic use in our packaging and products, as well as consider alternatives to plastic under our new global resource-efficient packaging design guidelines (covering resource use, recyclability, plastics use, chemicals in inks and adhesives, and use of recycled materials) developed and implemented with active involvement of our design engineers, marketing, and operations teams.

More Updates to Come

At SIE, we are invested in driving change through our sustainability efforts, aligned to Sony’s Road to Zero commitment. We will continue to share more updates as we look toward the future. Keep an eye on our PlayStation and the Environment page and this blog for updates.

Update to the article (04/20/2021): Please note plastic packaging elements will only be recycled in communities with suitable recycling processes for EPE, PE, PP, or PET materials in place, which may not exist in all areas depending on the region, country, and material. In particular, EPE is only recyclable in the few communities that have appropriate recycling facilities. Check with your municipal authority for information on local waste services.

Article updated on 01/24/2022

source: Sony One Blue Ocean Project