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APR releases recycling design guides for packaging and containers

The Association of Postconsumer Plastic Recyclers (APR) published an executive summary version of its recyclability design guides for packaging and containers.


Steve Alexander, APR’s executive director, stated that while the organization has published its design guides for the past 14 years, recently many non-technical audiences, consumer product companies, marketing and brand managers, as well as packaging design experts have expressed the need for a quick reference summary version of the guidelines. 

“As one of its core missions, APR has always sought to provide packaging designers with specific information to allow for informed decisions,” Alexander said. “For the past 14 years, the APR Recyclability Guidelines, which are based on actual industry experience, have provided that guidance to industry."

These guidelines describe how a package design might impact conventional mechanical plastics recycling systems, be improved to avoid recycling problems, and be optimized to make plastic packages more compatible with current recycling systems. 

Steve Sikra, Procter & Gamble's global leader for packaging materials science and technology, and a member of the APR Board of Directors, said that the APR Design for Recyclability Guidelines Executive Summary has been prepared by the APR as a quick reference tool for package designers, engineers, brand managers and decision makers.

The guidelines are focused on the most commonly reclaimed postconsumer packaging items: PET, polyethylene, and polypropylene bottles and containers.

Alexander believes that the summary version of the guidelines will help to provide a broader audience with an understanding of how the technical aspects of container and packaging design will have an impact on the ability of the package or product to be recycled.

“Recyclers tend to be the last to know about the impact of a new product or package design on the ability of the package to be recycled,” he said. “Hopefully, this summary will help a broader audience consider the downstream implications of the recyclability of a package during the conceptual development stage.” 

APR will present a web seminar Thursday, September 19th at 1:00 pm EST explaining how to utilize this tool to aid in the design process when considering the recyclability of a bottle or container. Click here to register for this webinar. 

Please visit http://www.plasticsrecycling.org/technical-resources/apr-design-for-recyclability-guidelines to download a copy of the executive summary as well as the full version of the design guides.

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