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Sustainable Packaging Design

Material Efficiency

It can take less lightweight plastic to package many products than alternatives. Substituting a variety of plastics packaging** with non-plastics alternatives would increase the amount of packaging generated annually in the U.S. by 55 million tons. 1

55Million Tons More

Reducing what we use in the first place conserves natural resources and means there is less overall material produced, per application. In fact, replacing all plastic packaging with alternatives would use more energy and create more greenhouse gases. 1


more energy


more GHGs

Plastics used in packaging help prevent food waste, deliver food safely, and meet FDA safety standards.

By preventing product waste, packaging also prevents the waste of all the resources* invested in growing and producing products.
Packaging can dramatically extend food shelf life, helping to save consumers money and prevent spoilage.

Energy Efficiency

Energy Efficiency

Plastic packaging creates less greenhouse gases
than alternative packaging.

Milk Jug

Milk Jug


Tuna Pouch

Plastic tuna pouch


Coffee Brick

Plastic coffee brick


Alternatives would result in 130% more global warming potential.
That's like adding 15.7 million cars to our roads.

Reduce. Reuse. Recycle. Recover.

Reduce. Reuse. Recycle. Recover.

More plastic is being recycled now than ever before and most Americans can recycle plastics after use.

Over 94%

Americans can recycle plastic bottles 2

person silhouette

3+ B lbs. Bottles recycled in 2014

Over 70%

Americans can recycle plastic bags and wraps at stores 3

person silhouette

1.2+ B lbs. Flexible polyethylene film recycled in 2014

Over 60%

Americans can recycle other rigid plastics 4

person silhouette

1.3+ B lbs. Other rigid plastics recycled in 2014

Through a combination of recycling and energy conversion, the United States recovered 27% of used plastics in 2013.

And finally, technologies that convert non-recycled plastic into energy help divert additional materials from landfills.

Non Recycled Plastic Energy
1 Truck
2 Building
3 Building
4 Home

Study: "Impact of Plastics Packaging on Life Cycle Energy Consumption & Greenhouse Gas Emissions in the United States and Canada," Franklin Associates, 2014. This study measures energy use and GHG emissions and is not an ISO 14044 life cycle assessment.

1Impact of plastics packaging on life cycle energy consumption & greenhouse gas emissions in the United States and Canada

22014 United States National Postconsumer Plastics Bottle Recycling Report

32014 National Postconsumer Plastic Bag & Film Recycling Report

42014 National Postconsumer Non-Bottle Rigid Plastic Recycling Report

**The study assessed the energy requirements and greenhouse gas emissions of six general categories of plastic packaging produced and sold in the United States and Canada. These include caps and closures, beverage containers, other rigid containers, carrier bags, stretch/shrink wrap, and other flexible packaging.

*Water, energy, materials

Across a multitude of industries and applications plastic packaging can deliver on sustainability expectations, whether protecting fragile medical equipment or fresh food.