Anne-Sophie and Léa, the founders of the project, met in 2019. Being acutely aware of the issue of over-packaging, they were looking for an efficient solution to reduce the amount of waste linked to e-commerce. Nine months later, Hipli was born: a re-usable polypropylene bag designed to transport textiles. Capable of protecting against moisture, punctures, and tears, it is ultra-light for minimum environmental impact and flexible enough to fit the shape of the products it contains. Three sizes of pouches are available, all of which are re-usable, foldable, and repairable to meet the different needs of e-tailers.
More than a product: a circular solution
In addition to the product, a circular service has been set up, monitored from start to finish and designed to minimise the packaging’s impact on the planet. Upon receiving their package, the recipient is invited to fold the pouch according to the instructions on the back to size of an ordinary letter. Since the pouch is pre-stamped, all they have to do is slip it into any letterbox or deposit it at a relay point so that it can be sent back to Hipli in Le Havre.
Once it has been returned to its point of departure, the packaging is checked, cleaned, disinfected and repaired if necessary by the Hipli team, which then reintegrates the packaging into the distribution circuit to be used for new shipments.
The reusable package, an alternative to e-commerce waste
Some 100 round trips – equivalent to eight years of loyal service - can be made by the same Hipli, preventing 25 kg of waste and generating on average 83% less carbon impact than a single-use kraft or cardboard package of the same size. As a result, the environmental impact of a Hipli is lower than that of a cardboard package right from its second use. And to close the loop, Hipli has concluded a partnership with two French recycling companies, supported by Precious Plastic, which process the packages at the end of their life.
The challenge now resides in ensuring users return their packages!
More than 140 brands have opted to use Hipli packages for their shipments. A small rigid package, also made of polypropylene and of course re-usable, has recently been made available for the transport of more fragile products, including cosmetics. The Hipli project has received awards from the Circular Fashion competition and the CITEO Circular Challenge. It was awarded the Solar Impulse Label, a demanding and highly selective label that assesses the economic profitability of products or processes that protect the environment.