Amcor joins United States Plastics Pact to advance circular economy

Global network of Plastics Pacts expands to the US

Amcor joins United States Plastics Pact to advance circular economy
Food and plastic waste

On 26 August 2020, Amcor announced that it had joined the US Plastics Pact, a collaborative, solutions-driven initiative to create a path forward to a circular economy for plastics in the United States by 2025. The US Plastics Pact is focused on four ambitious goals intended to drive significant systems change by unifying diverse cross-sector approaches, setting a national strategy, and creating scalable solutions. The first North American Pact of its kind, the US Plastics Pact is a collaboration led by The Recycling Partnership, World Wildlife Fund (WWF), and Ellen MacArthur Foundation.

The US Pact convenes more than 60+ brands, retailers, NGOs, and government agencies across the plastics value chain to bring one voice to US packaging through coordinated initiatives and innovative solutions for rethinking products, packaging, and business models.

“As a global leader in the packaging industry, Amcor’s colleagues continuously push themselves and others to achieve more, to understand challenges and advance transformational change,” said Eric Roegner, president Amcor Rigid Packaging. “We are already working with customers to increase recycled materials in packaging and increase recycling rates worldwide. The goals of the US Plastics Pact are closely aligned with Amcor’s sustainability agenda, and we can leverage our in-depth industry expertise and resources at scale to advance the transition to a circular economy.”

As a founding member of the US Plastics Pact, Amcor has agreed to collectively deliver against four ambitious goals by 2025:

1. Define a list of packaging to be designated as problematic or unnecessary by 2021 and take measures to eliminate them by 2025.

2. All plastic packaging to be 100% reusable, recyclable, or compostable.

3. Undertake ambitious actions to recycle or compost 50% of plastic packaging effectively.

4. The average recycled content or responsibly sourced bio-based content in plastic packaging to be 30%.

While the US Pact is complementary to and follows the ambitious precedents set by the existing global network of Plastic Pacts, it will be tailored to meet the US market’s unique needs and challenges.

“The US Pact will inspire and support upstream innovation through a coordinated national strategy, creating a unified framework and enabling members to accelerate progress toward our ambitious 2025 sustainability goals,” says Sarah Dearman, vice president of Circular Ventures for The Recycling Partnership.

Amcor believes there will always be a role for responsible packaging that offers differentiated functionality while minimizing waste in the environment. A responsible packaging system will require innovative packaging design, improvements to waste management infrastructure, and increased consumer participation.

Amcor, with sales of US$ 12.5 billion, employs 47,000 people in 230 locations in 40 countries, including India, where it has several plants. The Recycling Partnership is a US nonprofit organization that leverages corporate partner funding to transform recycling for good in states, cities, and communities nationwide.

Plastics Pacts in the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s global network

WRAP (Waste and Resources Action Plan) launched the UK Plastics Pact, the first Pact in the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s global network, in April 2018. Its membership now stands at over 100 businesses and supporters, which account for around 85% of the plastic packaging on UK supermarket shelves.

On 6 March 2020, the Global network of Plastics Pacts welcomed its first regional Plastics Pact – the European Plastics Pact – which was launched on that day in Brussels in consultation with more than 80 organizations from across Europe and with the support of WRAP. In line with all the Pacts in the global network, it will work towards developing a circular economy for plastics.

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

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