Several major brand names including Yoplait, Estee Lauder, Sealed Air, BJ’s Wholesale Club and manufacturer Ampac have agreed to adopt the How2Recycle Label, a voluntary recycling label developed by GreenBlue’s Sustainable Packaging Coalition.
Companies using the How2Recycle Label system can customize package labels by using up to four different options, each with its own icon. Options include Widely Recycled, Limited Recycling/Check Locally and Not Yet Recycled, as well as a Store Drop-Off label for bags, wraps and other films accepted at retail locations.
Sealed Air’s Fill-Air Inflatable packaging and Ampac’s No.2 Pouch will be the first to use the Store Drop-Off label. A combination of icons will be used on the General Mills-owned Yoplait yogurt brand’s fridge pack and on Outer Peace Acne Pads, an Aveda brand product owned by Esteé Lauder.
The How2Recycle Label, which is based on the UK’s On-Pack Recycling Label, aims to reduce consumer confusion in the US. The new label, launched as a national pilot project earlier this year, is consistent with the Federal Trade Commission’s Green Guides and includes updated recyclability data. Several state and local governments endorse the program. These include North Carolina, New York City’s Department of Sanitation, and the Stopwaste.org recycling challenge, which serves Alameda County in California.
ConAgra Foods, Costco Wholesale, Microsoft, REI and Seventh Generation also are members of the Sustainable Packaging Coalition. The label is already on Seventh Generation’s limited edition 180-ounce detergent bottle and 22-ounce pre-wash spray, as well as more than 50 REI products, including Novara bike accessories.
Nearly two years ago, SPC released a set of guidelines on the use of post-consumer recycled content in 27 packaging applications for a number of different plastics. The report, “Guidelines for Increasing Post-Consumer Recycled Content in Plastic Packaging,” offers strategies for increasing recycled content in beverage, dairy, electronic, household care, laundry, pharmaceutical, personal care and snack plastic packaging.