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Incorporating recyclability into design

A new series of free publications for designers and specifiers wishing to build recyclability considerations into their plastic packaging has been developed. Plastic packaging: Recyclability by Design was developed by a wide range of international industry expert stakeholders, co-ordinated by Recoup and financed through sponsorship from Reckitt Benckiser.

The report pulls information together in a simple document of commonly agreed international best practice. It offers packaging designers and specifiers a better understanding of the environmental implications of their design decisions.

Consideration of how to design a pack with an appreciation of the recovery process it may enter is important for packaging businesses, said Dr Steve Anderson, who worked with Recoup to develop the guide.

Advice included trying to use materials of the same type in single packs or readily separable materials, avoiding strongly pigmented polymers and using adhesives that can be removed in typical recycling plant washing processes.

Recoup chief executive Andrew Simmons said: As packaging technology becomes ever more sophisticated we need to be thinking more about the impacts of changes in packaging entering the market on the end of pipe recovery activities.

What we are saying is its important that businesses understand these issues at the planning stage and dont wait until the product is on the market to discover that their packaging presents problems in recycling streams.

The guides can be downloaded from


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