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Benchmarking Study Dispels Foodservice Packaging Recycling Myths

FPIContrary to popular perceptions, foodservice packaging has widespread acceptance by material recovery facilities, according to a new study.

The survey, commissioned by the Foodservice Packaging Institute (FPI) finds facilities already accepting various foodservice packaging. The survey counters the notion that both the industry and consumers think these products is not recycled. The survey shows promise for increased acceptance, according to FPI.

Responses from nearly 70 material recovery facilities (MRFs) in the US and Canada showed that the three most accepted products are cup sleeves, pizza boxes and paper carryout bags, with rigid plastic items such as cups and takeout containers being accepted by a majority of MRFs.

Resource Recycling Systems conducted the survey for FPI’s Paper Recovery Alliance and Plastics Recovery Group to identify baseline acceptance levels and measure future progress. Using 19 specific types of packaging including cups, containers, boxes and bags made from different plastic and paper-based materials, the survey also sought to identify factors affecting MRFs’ acceptance of packaging.

The full report, Acceptance of Foodservice Packaging by Material Recovery Facilities in the U.S. and Canada, is available to members of the two recovery groups. Non-members can find a two-page survey overview.

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