Paper-based products: Recyclability guidelines for optimal packaging design

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Wellpappenzuschnitt (Quelle: VDW)

The recyclability guidelines – developed by Cepi, Citpa, ACE and Fefco – give concrete guidance for designers to make sure functionality goes hand in hand with recyclability.

The use of paper for packaging purposes is growing every year, due to its excellent environmental performance but also to the increasing demand related to e-commerce and delivery services. There is a strong expectation from consumers, brands and retailers to have recyclable packaging material. A packaging recycling rate of 85 per cent is already achieved today and the paper value chain continues to improve.

In order to achieve even higher recycling targets while expanding the functionality of paper based packaging, it is important to start from the design-phase, considering both the intended purpose as well as the end-of-life. The recyclability guidelines – developed by Cepi, Citpa, ACE and Fefco – give concrete guidance for designers to make sure functionality goes hand in hand with recyclability.

“These recyclability guidelines and best practices can certainly ensure a higher quality of recycling. This is vital for the corrugated board industry since we already incorporate on average 89 per cent of recycled content in our product. Retailers, customers and end users can be certain that the paper sector effectively recycle the packaging put on the market. We want and we need every fibre back,” said Angelika Christ, Secretary General at Fefco.

In this context, the new European guidelines intend to become the go-to document to learn more about the implications of certain converting steps on the recyclability of used paper- based packaging. The signatories of the document hope they act as a source of inspiration for innovation and the introduction of new techniques. They are convinced that a widespread awareness among the value chain (including retailers and brand owners) can truly improve the recyclability of products. They are also convinced the guidelines will help meet national protocols and requirements and further close the circularity of our industry.

You can download a copy of the guidelines here.

Source: FEFCO (European Federation of Corrugated Board Manufacturers)

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