A brand’s eco-friendly practices rank as the top feature influencing consumers’ brand choice. That, according to a Conference Board survey of 30,000 consumers worldwide, has prompted Chicago-based agency Design Resource Center (DRC) to launch a new sustainability initiative aiming to make an impact in the packaged goods industry.

The initiative, named Responsible Design, is designed to help brands seeking to make a difference and guide them on their sustainable packaging journey. The launch comes as consumers are more often choosing to buy brands focusing on the people and planet, as well as major retailers developing comprehensive sustainability strategies. “While DRC has always had an eye toward finding sustainable solutions, we realize that more is needed. That’s why we are expanding our mission, strengthening our commitment to being responsible designers and helping to drive much-needed change,” said DRC Partner, Chuck Bokar.

“Many companies want to do the right thing, but they don’t know where to start, or they don’t have the internal resources to devote to it. That’s where DRC can help,” said DRC Founding Partner, John Norman. “We not only look at how a package design’s visual and verbal language communicates sustainability, but we’re making strategic recommendations around packaging size, substrates, reusability, the supply chain and other aspects of the packaging that can make it more eco-friendly.”

The company has identified simple, intermediate and complex sustainability principles they apply to each project, sharing a range of insights for their clients to consider.

“Sustainability initiatives are always a moving target. We are not trying to change the world overnight, but we want to lead the charge by helping brands become part of the solution. It’s the responsible thing to do,” adds Norman.