- The Recycling Partnership recently announced that global packaging company Sonoco has joined as their latest funding partner.
- “Sonoco’s support strengthens our ability to bring better recycling programs to communities all over America. Not only will we be growing access to recover more consumer packaging, we will be leading the charge to improve the quality of the recovered material," said Jeff Meyers, vice president of operations for the Partnership, in a press release.
- In addition to material recovery, the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and wasted energy and water were cited as shared priorities. The Recycling Partnership estimates that its efforts to date will result in the recovery of 500 million pounds of new material over the next 10 years.
Sonoco will be the 26th funding partner of the Partnership, joining other manufacturers such as Dart and Dow, retail companies such as Target, and industry players such as Waste Management. During the past year, the national nonprofit has focused on assessing curbside recycling infrastructure, reducing contamination, and helping municipalities deploy new cart systems, among other areas. To date, their grants have reportedly stimulated $21 million in new infrastructure and funded more than 395,000 new carts.
Because of its progress toward sustainability goals, Sonoco is seen as a good fit to join these efforts. According to the company, 10% of its global manufacturing sites have now achieved 95% diversion rates and the company's recycling business has recovered 60% — by weight — of the products it sends into the marketplace.
Like other packaging manufacturers, Sonoco has faced some questions over whether some of its newer products are easily recyclable. The company's new TruVue plastic can, made with a metal rim, has received particular attention. They have recognized these concerns while saying that solutions are available and infrastructure will continue to adapt. As seen with other types of plastic packaging it can take time for recycling systems to catch up to new products on the market. The growing presence of packaging manufacturers in the Partnership indicates that this could be an area for greater collaboration in the future.