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PET Packaging Ready for Prime Time

PET packaging and recycling associations, PLASTICS, and Michigan State team up and enlist Dennis Quaid to educate consumers on the sustainability of plastic packaging.

Bruce Adams

August 25, 2023

Four organizations with an interest in promoting plastic packaging and a state university have launched a national campaign to educate consumers about the environmental benefits of plastic packaging and the importance of recycling.

Global packaging leader Amcor, the National Association for PET Container Resources (NAPCOR), Plastics Recycling Corp. of California (PRCC), Plastics Industry Association (PLASTICS), and Michigan State University announced on Aug. 22 an episode of Public Television’s Viewpoint with Dennis Quaid and a series of national commercials will air on cable television. The campaign highlights the sustainability advantages of PET and raises awareness of the importance of its recycling.

A five-minute video presentation was made available on Aug. 14 to more than 175 public television stations nationwide. It will be in rotation for the next year. The campaign’s goal is to help US consumers make educated purchasing decisions and encourage recycling habits.

The truth about PET packaging

“The importance of debunking misconceptions of PET packaging and addressing the environmental advantages of PET containers is more important than ever,” said Laura Stewart, executive director of NAPCOR. “This program offered us an excellent opportunity to reach a broad audience with a critical message — based on facts — that has been getting lost amid misinformation. The truth, as verified by two recent life-cycle assessments including one by McKinsey & Co., shows the true impact of PET as the environmentally responsible packaging solution that can significantly contribute to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, global warming, smog, and acid rain compared to other primary beverage packaging materials.”

In addition to Stewart, participants featured in the program include Eric Roegner, president of Amcor Rigid Packaging; Charlotte Dreizen, director, Sustainability and Environment, PLASTICS; Matt Daum, PhD, director, Michigan State University School of Packaging and assistant dean of Corporate Relations and Strategy for the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources; Sally Houghton, executive director, Plastic Recycling Corp. of California; and Kristin Kelley, vice president, Corporate Communications and External Affairs, Amcor Rigid Packaging.

The campaign also includes a 60-second commercial that will run nationally on FOX Business during prime time on Aug. 24 and 27. That same ad will be broadcast 400 times across the top 100 US media markets through the end of August.

Online video calls for more recycling infrastructure

A full-length video posted online and embedded here argues that PET containers are cheaper to make and have a lower carbon footprint then similar containers made from glass or aluminum, and they are fully recyclable. It also says that better and more infrastructure and access to recycling is needed to promote PET’s recyclability, and makes the case that liquid products packaged in PET bottles have a much longer shelf life than those packaged in other materials.

“We’re thrilled to tell this story through Viewpoint with Dennis Quaid and empower American consumers to make educated, informed decisions,” said Roegner. “The opportunity to tell the circularity story of the PET bottle — from design to manufacturing, into the hands of the consumer, and then recycling it again and again and again — is something we believe is critical for our industry and critical for the health of our planet. PET packaging plays a pivotal role in our daily lives by preserving and protecting our food, packaging and transporting goods, and ensuring the secure and effective delivery of medicine. Additionally, PET is 100% recyclable and can be made from 100% recycled material,” said Roegner.

About the Author(s)

Bruce Adams

Bruce Adams is an experienced content creator and trade publishing veteran who has written extensively about the plastics, automotive aftermarket, hospitality, tire, rubber, mining, and construction industries.

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