Case Study: Bolton's Naturals reduces sourcing lead time 80% and improves sustainability
International Sourcing was Leading to Production Delays
Bolton’s Naturals is a Canada-based personal care brand specializing in topical magnesium sprays, gel, balms and lotions that deliver muscle-relaxing, joint-soothing, and re-energizing relief through the skin. In late 2022, the brand expanded its Amazon presence and into stores such as Whole Foods requiring larger quantities of primary packaging to fulfill their expanding demand.
Bolton’s Naturals sourced a majority of their primary packaging from suppliers in Asia, including the jar for their Magnesium Balm, one of their best selling products. While this solution worked at the time, the team was looking to improve packaging for their balm in two ways:
- Reduce Lead Time: It was taking Bolton’s Naturals up to 5 months to receive their primary packaging due to international shipping & customs delays, introducing both inventory and demand risks.
- A More Sustainable Solution: Bolton’s Naturals wanted to reduce carbon emissions from transport and eliminate the need for additional labeling on their jars. Achieving both of these lofty goals would likely require a domestic supplier with specialized decorating capabilities.
A New Domestic Supplier Specializing in Digitally Printed Tubes
To keep up with sales growth, Bolton’s Naturals needed a way to quickly source new primary packaging. While they had existing experience in primary packaging sourcing, finding the perfect solution to improve their Magnesium Balm was proving difficult. Bolton’s Naturals had begun looking for packaging alternatives through searching on Google and referrals, but struggled with the results they found- missing information such as minimum order quantities or supplier location, poor website quality, slow customer service, and antiquated industry specific acronyms were just some of the common frustrations. Above all, many queries they sent for quotes, received no response from packaging suppliers.
“You don’t know what you don’t know,” says Bolton Naturals CEO James Woller. “It's a very difficult and painful process to find a supplier who has exactly what you’re looking for, evaluate that supplier, and establish contact through to order placement.”
Enter Impacked Packaging. Woller and Bolton’s Naturals were drawn to the platform by how easy it was to compare and narrow down options with just a few clicks. Starting with a search for 4oz and 8oz cosmetic tubes, the team then narrowed their selection to Canadian based suppliers to minimize lead time and carbon emissions from transit. From here, Woller filtered on digital printing, a supplier capability that would eliminate the need for additional labeling or investment in films by directly printing on the tube instead.
After reviewing the potential options, the team wanted to learn more about a variety of tubes from Plastube to understand feasibility based on lead time, cost, and preferred materials. Using Impacked’s platform, Bolton’s Naturals submitted sample and quote requests and were connecting directly with Plastube’s team in less than 24 hours.
A New Magnesium Balm in a Fraction of the Time
"We reached out to Impacked Packaging and were overly impressed from the get go," said Woller.
By using the Impacked Packaging platform to search, sample, and quote, the Bolton’s Naturals team was able to find a locally sourced, more sustainable, extruded polyethylene tube for their magnesium balms. Impressed by the quality and capabilities delivered by Plastube, Bolton’s Naturals opted to transition their balm and existing lotions to the polyethylene tubes.
By transitioning to local sourcing, Bolton's Naturals reduced their lead time by roughly 80% to 4-5 weeks. Additonally, by shipping from Plastube’s Quebec location to Bolton’s Naturals’ filling facility in Toronto, the team reduced carbon emissions from transport by a whopping 4x when compared to sourcing from a supplier in Asia.
“We had not fully explored domestic packaging options at our order sizes and price point, but when you consider reductions in transportation cost, savings with direct to manufacturer pricing, and peace of mind knowing your packaging will arrive on time, the decision makes perfect sense. Impacked truly made this process faster and easier for us.”
Looking to find domestic suppliers for your next project? Schedule a Demo Call with Impacked