Packaging Disposal Guide

Our Environmental Responsibility

We take our commitment to environmental responsibility very seriously.

Of course, that commitment manifests itself in a number of ways. Responsible harvesting practices, fundraising for fishery conservation, and education and advocacy efforts are part of how we care for the pristine habitats that produce a seafood bounty. Renewable energy use, carbon offsets, and a barge-to-truck supply chain (rather than flying) comprise a few of our efforts to curb our carbon footprint.

Even though we are a small company with deeply rooted environmental stewardship values, we can’t overlook the impact of our packaging. The fact is that the regulations on seafood and the nature of premium frozen fish in particular necessitate a lot of packaging! But we’ve made tremendous progress toward making our packaging as low impact as possible.

Packaging Materials and Disposal Instructions

Cardboard Boxes and Paper

Cardboard Disposal Guide Cardboard Disposal Guide

Our new boxes are made from 90% recycled material — the highest post-consumer waste content available to use for our cardboard packaging and paper. They are Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) certified and feature water-based, non-toxic ink.

We only print on 100% post-consumer waste, sustainably sourced paper for our newsletters, recipes cards, and print materials.

Box and Paper Disposal: Our cardboard boxes and paper are recyclable with your paper recycling. As we roll out new boxes this season, you may receive an old box as we use our remaining supply. Whichever box arrives, please recycle.

Don’t forget you can also reuse — a.k.a. upcycle — our boxes! Our members have found all sorts of fun and creative ways to repurpose our packaging. We’ve heard they make great building blocks for a cardboard fort, a pretend spaceship, or even a cozy hiding spot for a cat. We’ve also seen our members turn them into spice organizers, storage organizers, and gift wrapping.

Insulation

As we transition to new and improved packaging during the 2021 season, your shipment will include one of two types of insulation. How will you know the difference? The color.

Brown ClimaCell

ClimaCell Insulation Disposal Guide ClimaCell Insulation Disposal Guide

If your box arrives with brown paper insulation, it is ClimaCell. ClimaCell insulation is made from renewable plant-based components and paper and is the only insulator to receive the How2Recycle “Widely Recyclable” mark.

There are a lot of recyclable materials out there. Unfortunately, most of them end up in waste streams that don’t get reused. ClimaCell is designed to be repulpable alongside cardboard, a product that is recycled 93% of the time (compared to plastic, which is only recycled 9% of the time). In time, we hope to use ClimaCell for all our deliveries.

Brown ClimaCell Insulation Disposal: Please recycle our insulation with your paper and cardboard recycling. Do you compost? You can also use ClimaCell insulation for composting.

GreenCellFoam

GreenCellFoam Insulation Disposal Guide GreenCellFoam Insulation Disposal Guide

If your box arrives with foam insulation surrounded by green plastic, it is GreenCellFoam. GreenCellFoam is a plant-based, non-toxic, biodegradable foam with a recyclable liner.

GreenCellFoam Insulation Disposal: One way you can dispose of this plant-based insulation responsibly? Recycle the plastic liner and dissolve the foam in your sink! Watch to see how:

We haven’t tested it ourselves, but GreenCell also claims their insulation makes for a great grill starter and is safe to burn. Of course, just be sure to remove the #4 recyclable plastic liner first. Once you remove the liner, it’s also at-home compostable.

Plastic Disposal

Plastic Disposal Guide Plastic Disposal Guide

The reality of modern seafood production is such that using plastic packaging is inevitable. As packaging technology develops or as regulations are revised, we hope this will change.

The vacuum-sealed packages surrounding the fish are essential from a regulatory standpoint, and they’re also essential from a quality standpoint. Creating a tight seal around the fish is paramount if we are going to home-deliver it to you and preserve it in our freezers in a way that honors the delicate, premium quality of wild seafood. The plastics used in this quality seal are BPA, BHA, and PFAS free. But we’re sad to say that the only available packaging options that serve this purpose have to be thrown out, although we are actively looking for compostable or recyclable alternatives. Currently, we have yet to find one on the market. If you know of one, please let us know!

Plastic Disposal: To dispose of the vacuum-sealed fish packaging, please throw them away in your trash disposal. A quick rinse of the bag will prevent any fishy smells from developing.

Dry Ice Safety

Dry-Ice Safety Guide Dry-Ice Safety Guide

It is possible that there will be dry ice leftover in your shipping box or delivery tote. Do not handle the dry ice with your bare hands. It is cold enough to freeze skin on contact.

For your safety, please let the dry ice evaporate completely away from children or pets. Place in a cooler or on a non-porous surface such as stainless steel or concrete.

This information is also printed on our boxes and on the dry ice bags.

Packaging and Disposal FAQ

Can I return my boxes to you?
Per seafood regulations, we cannot reuse your fish boxes. If possible for you, we ask that you simply recycle or repurpose the boxes yourself.

What's the best way to make sure the plastic, vacuum-sealed fish packaging doesn't stink up my trash?
Once you remove the fish from the bag, rinse out the plastic before throwing it away.

Can I ship your shipping boxes and insulation back to you?
We are currently unable to receive used shipping boxes and insulation.

Why is there so much insulation and packaging for your shipped shares?
Shipping frozen fish across the country is a logistical feat. We need a generous portion of dry ice along with efficient insulation in order for UPS to deliver our fish frozen solid to your door. We’ve done the research, and we’re confident that the way we do it has the smallest packaging footprint possible. Still, we revisit this every year and are always looking for ways to reduce our waste.

Still have questions? Email us at salmonsupport@sitkasalmonshares.com and we'll be happy to answer them.

Thank you for taking the time to responsibly dispose of our packaging. Our mission and vision for a better seafood system wouldn't be possible without your help! If you haven't yet, you can also support our fishermen and our mission by enrolling in our community supported fishery (CSF). Feel free to follow the link below to view our share options.