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PP ‘widely recycled’ in USA proves power of collaboration

The US How2Recycle labelling programme is upgrading the eligibility of rigid polypropylene (PP) tubs, bottles, jugs, and jars from “check locally” to “widely recyclable” in the United States. It says at least 60% of the country has access to proper PP collection.

How2Recycle thanks industry investments and market data provided by the Recycling Partnership’s Polypropylene Recycling Coalition (PRC), which enabled this decision. It is ‘confident’ recognising PP as a widely recyclable material aligns with the Federal Trade Commission’s Green Guides.

‘The efforts of the PRC are a great example of the impact that can be made with collaborative action focused on supporting the full recycling system and we are honoured to have been in an advisory role since its inception,’ comments Caroline Cox, director of How2Recycle. ‘As rigid polypropylene access, sortation, and end markets are on an upward trend across the US, we are excited to upgrade the eligibility of this packaging format.’

Despite calling this a ‘win’, she maintains it is important to note that this is not the end of the road. ‘The entire value chain should continue to invest in improving the recyclability of all materials and packaging formats.’

‘Achieving success for challenged materials is not a narrative often heard in our industry.  It was a mere two years ago when we acknowledged the challenges polypropylene recycling was facing and its uncertain future,’ says Keefe Harrison, ceo of the Recycling Partnership. ‘In forming the coalition, we committed to leaning in and taking action in support of the material, to push ourselves and the industry to a more circular future.’

He goes on to state: ‘The power of collaboration across the value chain can be seen through this substantial system wide shift for polypropylene.  The precedent we are setting for materials, coalitions, and innovations is exciting and hopeful.  We encourage companies to join us as we continue to lean in and push polypropylene recycling to new heights.’

Launched in July of 2020, the PRC’s mission is to bring stakeholders across the PP value chain together—from resin suppliers and manufacturers to consumer packaged goods, and recycling processors—to improve PP recovery and recycling in the US and to further develop end markets.

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