The Association of Plastic Recyclers
  • APR Design® Recognition Program
    APR Design® Recognition Program

Innovations in Plastic Packaging Design

Which APR Recognition Program is right for me?

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Innovation is a significant driver of the recovered materials economy. Ideally, package manufacturers and brands innovate recycling-compatible package design, and plastic reclaimers innovate to accept and process more diverse supply streams into a wider range of recycled content products. APR’s Design® Recognition Program celebrates and showcases innovations in packaging design. This Program was established to encourage innovators to conduct Critical Guidance testing and confirm any impact of new plastics designs and components on recycling.

Since its inception, the APR Design® Recognition Program has recognized many companies for innovations that have collectively improved plastic recycling feedstocks. Every year new innovations are recognized, and most of these are now commercially available and widely used by converters and brands helping to create a circular economy for plastic packaging. Consumer Brand Companies may seek Critical Guidance Recognition to support commercialization of a new technology, while other innovators may use APR Recognition in their sales and marketing programs.

The APR Design® Recognition Program comprises four different levels of review and recognition for plastic packaging. Each level is explained below.

    • Recognizes materials, components, and complete packages composed of PET, HDPE, PP, and PE film that are considered Preferred in the APR Design® Guide for Plastics Recyclability
    • Consists of an evaluation by the APR Design® Guide Administrator and technical staff, measuring the candidate item against each APR Design® Guide criterion for a Preferred design
    • Results in a letter of recognition that the component or package meets or exceeds APR Design® Meets Preferred Guidance criteria
    • Suppliers can use the letter and program badge to demonstrate recycling compatibility to potential customers, and for marketing purposes

    Ready to apply for APR Design® Meets Preferred Guidance (MPG) Recognition?

    • Review the MPG Operating Procedures
    • Review the Resource Document for your item. The following design elements/components are currently eligible for MPG Recognition:
    • Submit this Program Agreement and your signed Resource Document to Program Administrator This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
    • Recognizes significant new technologies or package components that solve long-standing problems in sustainable package design, and encourages wide commercial use of such innovations
    • Applies to both specific package design components, and to packages incorporating the component
    • Requires APR Critical Guidance test protocol performed by an independent third-party testing laboratory
    • Results in a letter of recognition for an innovative solution, licensed use of APR logo and statement for use on promotional materials, and listing on the APR Design® Guide web page
    • Innovators can use the letter and promotional materials to document innovative solutions to potential customers

    Ready to apply for APR Design® Recognition for Critical Guidance?

    • Applies to specific package design components, not complete packages
    • Requires testimonials from recyclers that the innovation does not cause problems with productivity, yield, or final product quality
    • Encourages lab test data to be submitted
    • Results in a letter of acknowledgement that the package component does not pose problems to recyclers, and a listing on the APR Design® Guide web page
    • Suppliers can use the letter to document recycling compatibility to potential customers.

    Ready to apply for APR Design® Recognition for Responsible Innovation?

    • Recognizes complete packages that incorporate significant new technologies or design components that solve long-standing problems in sustainable package design, and encourages wide commercial use of such innovations
    • Requires APR Applications Guidance test protocol performed by an independent third-party testing laboratory
    • Operates in the same way as Critical Guidance Recognition

    Ready to apply for APR Design® Recognition for Applications Guidance?

 

APR Critical Guidance Recognition Recipients – Recyclable Packaging Components

APR commends the following companies that have completed rigorous testing to ensure their products meet the APR Design® Guide for Plastics Recyclability.

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