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Colgate-Palmolive Aims to Improve Recycling Rates with How2Recycle Labels

Colgate-Palmolive is the latest CPG hoping to improve the recycling rates of its packaging by placing the How2Recyle label on products like Tom’s of Maine, Softsoap, Palmolive, Ajax, Colgate, Speed Stick and more.
By using the How2Recycle label, which aims to reduce confusion about recycling through clear standardized consumer labels, Colgate-Palmolive will help “millions of individuals to recycle more, and better,” according to a How2Recycle project associate.
Colgate-Palmolive is a member of the Sustainable Packaging Coalition, an organization of companies, government officials, and academics that are working to harness the power of industry to make packaging more sustainable and which administrates the How2Recycle program.
Colgate-Palmolive joins a long list of well-known companies that have adopted the How2Recycle labels. People Against Dirty, the San Francisco-based company that makes Method cleaning products, joined the Sustainable Packaging Coalition’s How2Recycle program in AugustNestlé Waters North America also adopted the labels for half-liter bottles across all its major US brands last summer. Procter & Gamble signed on in 2015 to add the recycling instructions to Dawn dishwashing liquid packaging.
The How2Recycle completed a soft launch in 2012. By the following year, Kellogg Company and 11 other major companies had started using the labels. In 2014, Wegman’s Food Markets became the first grocer to participate, and McDonald’s became the first national restaurant chain to join the program.

How It Works

The How2Recycle label can be applied to any consumer product packaging, made of any packaging material or format. The program now consists of over 65 member companies that place the How2Recycle label on packaging to inform consumers how to recycle accurately and where to go if they need to find information specific to their municipality.

The Sustainable Packaging Coalition says it created How2Recycle for a variety of reasons: valuable recyclables are still ending up in landfill, recycling labeling is not yet standardized, and recycling information can be hard to understand. Not only is the How2Recycle label designed to alleviate these issues, but it is also designed to comply with the Federal Trade Commission’s Green Guides that regulate environmental marketing claims. As a project of SPC, How2Recycle also has its eyes on the future of innovation in packaging design for recyclability and recycling economics.

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One thought on “Colgate-Palmolive Aims to Improve Recycling Rates with How2Recycle Labels

  1. The How2Recyle label on products needs to be further improved by clearly identifying the TYPE OF PLASTIC each packaging component is made of on the actual item, that way it becomes easier to segregate and ensure lowest contamination of waste streams, we the public request this adjustment to what is otherwise a very good idea. I should not need to go to a web-site to sort-out my waste correctly.

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