What is Rapioli?
Rapioli is reuasable plastic shipping packaging, with its own
snap-in cushioning. The unique, patent-pending concept was first
recognized for its innovation by the US Environmental Protection
Agency (EPA), and was then awarded a development grant from the
California Department of Conservation, Division of Recycling.
Follow the visual timeline down the left to see the various structural
forms that have been explored over the past five years.
Rapioli comes in 4 standard sizes –
and can be customized to fit your needs. Since the primary application
for Rapioli is shipping within an organization’s supply
chain, some uses call for clear plastic, facilitating quick identification
of contents. Other uses may require an opaque material –
RPET is readily available in black, and can be produced to match
any color. Plus, Rapiolis can be made in custom proportions and
Who needs Rapioli?
Rapioli was designed for businesses that ship items back and forth
within their facility or supply chain. Having a “closed
loop”, or the reverse logistics, to get the Rapiolis back
is the most sustainable – and profitable – situation.
Companies such as Walmart, HP and Ikea have
gained a competitive advantage by rethinking their energy and
material use, and reducing their waste – specifically in
packaging. Others, like Toyota, have approached “zero waste
to landfill” goals by using reusable plastic pallets in
shipping, saving millions of dollars in the process.
What are the advantage of using
Rapioli over cardboard boxes?
• Reusable / returnable – multiple uses
• Less expensive than cardboard on cost-per-trip basis
• Easy to clean
• Stackable, nestable design
• Cleaner than cardboard (no paper dust)
• More sanitary than cardboard
• Material is waterproof
• 100% Recyclable
The Rapioli is perfectly positioned at the
intersection of the rapidly growing green movement and the shrinking
economy. Companies are actively seeking to cut costs and reduce
inefficiencies in order to stay viable. Plus, there is increasing
public pressure on corporations concerning social responsibility
issues such as resource use, over-packaging and waste. These factors
are driving companies to reexamine their purchasing decisions
and their suppliers. The Rapioli reusable packaging solution addresses
these business needs by minimizing waste, optimizing resources
and enhancing brand image.
Why should we care?
A staggering 38 billion water bottles enter US landfills every
year. Plus, our landfills contain thirty percent paperboard –
over 6.4 billion cardboard boxes were used to ship items via ground
or air in 2007 alone. Simply put, we can’t afford to waste
resources. Oil, and materials made from oil such as plastic, has
a finite supply, its price fluctuates wildly and it’s tied
to national security concerns. Water, needed to sustain life,
is becoming increasingly scarce. Energy demand has outpaced supply
– and large-scale renewable solutions are years away from
meeting our needs.
The oil, water and energy required to make
plastic – from extraction to transportation to manufacturing
to disposal – should not be wasted if alternatives exist.
That’s why i2i is working so hard to bring the Rapioli to
It’s true that cardboard is made from
a renewable resource – trees. But there are significant
embedded energy costs to grow, harvest, transport, and process
trees into paper. Using a cardboard box once has a needlessly
high environmental cost, even if it is eventually recycled. A
durable, reusable, reclaimable, recycled plastic container is
a more sustainable solution.
Use of the Rapioli makes a positive impact
on a company’s “triple bottom line”: People
benefit from less waste in their community and in their future,
the Planet benefits from a lower usage of its finite resources
(most plastic is made from fossil fuels) and energy used in manufacturing
and Profits result by retaining and reusing business assets (and
good employees) and having a great story that reflects well on
The Rapioli concept is gaining traction.
In Nathan Shedroff’s latest book: Design
is the Problem: The Future of Design Must Be Sustainable
the Rapioli is presented as one of the Solutions.
Next > Rapioli specifications