September 30, 2020 - FreshPlaza, HortiDaily
APR in the News
Giving produce clamshells a second life by making them recycle-ready
On the first day of the NABC/USHBC Virtual Conference and Expo, John Keeley of Highland Packaging, Rick Tomlinson of the California Strawberry Commission and Janis McIntosh of Naturipe Farms discussed the history and future of recycling in the produce industry. One of the main focuses of this session was how to make produce clamshells more recyclable.
The label issue is one of the major challenges that is causing clamshells to end up in landfills. “The adhesive used by the paper labels is what is causing the issues, and many facilities aren’t set up do these with this,” Keeley says. “When the clamshells use a polypropylene label with the right stock and adhesive, approved by the Association of Plastic Recyclers, it ensures that the label separates easily from the PET in the recycling process. This then allows the creation of clean-wash thermoform flakes which can be re-incorporated into the new clamshells. Extruders and thermoformers have agreed to incorporate these clean-wash thermoform flakes into the clamshells at a target rate of 10%, and with the major marketers now requiring this, there is an incentive and economic reason for doing so,” he explains.
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