When’s the last time you were confused about which bin to toss your garbage in? Trash, Recycling, Compost. Then there’s paper, aluminum, plastic. How do you know if the plastic you have can even be recycled? Does it have one of those arrow triangles with a number on it? Which numbers can I recycle again? You get my drift… We’ve talked a lot about the demand for sustainable packaging, but today we’ll discuss the importance of proper labeling.
The How2Recycle Label
You and I are not the only ones who get confused about what can be recycled and where. Fortunately, the Sustainable Packaging Coalition, a project of the environmental nonprofit GreenBlue, has developed a solution! (Thank goodness, I need directions for these types of things…) They began developing the How2Recycle Label in 2008 to reduce the confusion associated with inconsistent package recycling labels. The program launched in early 2013 as a “voluntary, standardized labeling system that clearly communicates recycling instructions to the public,” (http://www.how2recycle.info/label-history/). The on-package How2Recycle Labels are clear, consistent, and concise – recycling labels that make sense.
The label is capable of providing special instructions for recycling your product, if need-be. They display the familiar recyclability icon (you know, the arrow triangle with a number on it), list the packaging material and associated components it’s referring to, and provides a consumer-facing website for more information.
Consumers can visit the how2recycle.info website to find the nearest recycling locations including curbside and store drop-off, as well as learn all about the organization. The goal of the How2Recycle Label Program is to increase the recycling rates (currently quite low) by achieving the following:
- Reduce confusion and provide clear instructions to consumers on how to properly recycle their package
- Improve the accuracy of recyclability claims
- Adhere to the Federal Trade Commission Green Guides
- Develop a supply of quality of recycled material
Shop With Confidence
Consumers on the site can also scan the names of current supporters of the program such as Target, Seventh Generation, Best Buy, and PAC Worldwide! You can shop at any one of these companies with confidence, knowing that they have made sustainability a priority. Target has placed the How2Recycle label on over 40 SKUs of their Market Pantry, Archer Farms, and Simply Balanced brands, 200 SKUS of the up&up brand, 30 SKUs of the Spritz brand, and their plastic mailing envelopes. Over 270 SKUs across the Targets in the nation and that’s a whole lot of packaging more likely to be properly recycled and repurposed. That’s INCREDIBLE!! And that’s just one business.
Visit www.how2recycle.info to learn more about how you can get involved, and contact your local PAC Sales Representative or email firstname.lastname@example.org to find out how we can put the label on your bag without any extra cost. Win-Win!