Mon. Feb 26th, 2024
alert-–-australian-homewares-company-temple-&-webster-slammed-over-‘unnecessary’-packaging-actAlert – Australian homewares company Temple & Webster slammed over ‘unnecessary’ packaging act

One of ‘s biggest online homewares retailers has been slammed for the ‘unnecessary’ amount of polystyrene foam it used to box up one bed frame.

A Hobart woman said she felt ‘enraged’ after she needed five bins to dispose of the ‘styrofoam’ inside her Temple & Webster furniture delivery.

She posted several photos to Reddit of bin liners and a rubbish bin filled with the packing foam, which can take hundreds of years decompose.

‘This is the amount of styrofoam used in packing for one bed frame from Temple & Webster,’ she wrote.

‘It’s enough to fill 4 large bin liners and half of the outdoor bin. Completely unnecessary.

An n woman claims companies ‘need to do better’ than using large amounts of polystyrene in delivery boxes

A Hobart woman said she felt ‘enraged’ after needing five bins to dispose of the ‘styrofoam’ inside her Temple & Webster furniture delivery

‘The lack of consideration of this fact enrages me. n companies need to do better.’

She claimed ‘styrofoam takes 500 years to decompose’.

According to the Society for Environmental Journalists’ website that estimate is correct. 

READ MORE: The great recycling myth: less than half gets recycled

Human beings have always produced waste, but never on such a scale as now. Take plastic bottles. More than 480 billion are sold worldwide every year — about 20,000 every second. Stretched out end to end, they would circle the globe more than 24 times.


Once in the landfill, it does not decompose quickly. Some estimates put the lifespan of styrofoam in a landfill and some put it way beyond that.’

One online estimate says in certain conditions could even take a million years to break down.

Response to the woman’s post varied from agreeing with the complaint to defending the retailer and suggesting ways to avoid the packaging.

One person said some recycling centres specialise in polystyrene, though she’d have to deliver the pieces to the drop-off point.

‘I agree that it would be better if it wasn’t used at all. I recently bought a product with all paper packaging, even the screws were in little paper bags.’

Several said the packaging was ‘necessary’ or it wouldn’t be used. 

‘If your bed frame arrived all banged up you’d be on here whinging about that,’ said one person.

‘Flat-packed furniture shipped around the world and delivered to your door needs protection otherwise it would arrive damaged. It is necessary.

‘Do you honestly think a company would spend the time and money putting styrofoam in for no reason?’

Several said the answer is shop with the environment in mind. 

‘The alternative is to not buy mass produced, imported furniture,’ one person said.

Another said by far the best option for the environment was to reuse second-hand furniture.

Some estimates put the lifespan of polystyrene in a landfill to at least 500 years

‘Second-hand is the affordable option, and even better for the environment.

‘There’s plenty of excellent options available, but it takes more effort. People prefer the convenience.’ 

‘[Go to] gumtree or council cleanups in rich suburbs,’ another agreed.

Temple & Webster claim on its website that it collaborated with ‘sustainability experts’ to make its packaging ‘recyclable or reusable’ and include ‘more recycled content in our packaging’.

The website makes no mention of its use of styrofoam. 

contacted Temple & Webster for comment.

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