Soda Crystals are actually a 'wet' product and the reason why they can go hard if they reach over 32oC. The water content would seep out of a cardboard box. Even when they were supplied in a cardboard box, many years ago, they had a plastic bag inside. Some customers complained that a box wasn't ideal for pouring the crystals, particularly if they'd started to clump together. A wax lined cardboard box is also not a viable option as they are not recycled.
The new bag is therefore more practical and uses less materials overall and certainly less energy in its production. Although plastic bags are technically recyclable, such facilities are not routinely supplied by UK local authorities. We are however investigating the possibility of swapping the plastic bag to one that is recyclable. It won't stand up on shelf, so may be harder to spot but we'll announce any changes in advance.
The soap in Liquid Soap is different to the dry version; it's not simply dissolved flakes. There is actually less energy used in its production and although we have to use a plastic bottle, it's PET so is widely recyclable. It's not practical for us to use recycled plastic in the bottle for regulatory/hygiene reasons. The market dictated a move in the product formulation from flakes to liquid because the former was not suitable for use in automatic washing machines. They are also suitable for vegetarians and vegans.
In summary, you sometimes have to look at the OVERALL environmental impact and we always look at ways of minimising our carbon footprint wherever practical, as well as being an ethical supplier. For example, we don't use palm oil in our Liquid Soap. We always welcome any comments from customers, so do please get in touch: leave feedback in the Comments section below or on Facebook or Twitter.