Innovation and value based product development is the forefront for most companies, but few consider how this type of development should be focused on a wider industry challenge, in order to become part of an industry solution. The plastics converting sector is no exception to this consideration. For the plastics converting sector, the solution lays in no single participant, but through collaboration, with a number of stakeholders, viz. the decision-makers, typically the brand owners, the influencers, typically the consumers, and the facilitators, typically the convertors such as Mpact Plastics.
Designing new products based on recycling principles lies within the knowledge base of some convertors, such as Mpact Plastics, who has direct interaction with the decision-makers, also referred to as the brand owners. “Being the facilitators of new packaging developments, the responsibility to guide recycling-friendly packaging is largely in the hands of the converters, such as ourselves”, states Neelin Naidoo, MD of Mpact plastics. Janine Basson, Stakeholder Relations Manager for PETCO, the industry body responsible for fulfilling the South African PET plastic industry’s role of Extended Producer Responsibility, confirms that “Packaging decision makers need to understand how packaging design decisions affect container recyclability, and this must further be recognized and facilitated by convertors in order to be compatible with the broadest range of recycling technologies”.
It is however the brand owners, or decision-makers, who have to take the courageous step to break certain norms and agree to make sustainability a top priority, even when challenged with commercial matters such as iconic shapes, product recognition and costs. At Mpact we believe there is a suitable compromise to ensure that industry and brand needs are met.
The third party, the consumers or influencers have minimal individual impact but maximum collective impact. Through education and by eliminating ignorant purchase decisions, they can choose to consume products and support brands that support our environment. This type of education is and should continue to be driven by the industry bodies that promote good practices within the plastics industry – the same bodies that some convertors (or facilitators), such as Mpact Plastics, support through membership and the contribution of levies. According to PETCO, “Consumers must realize that they have the purchasing power to demand packaging that promotes recycling and sustainability.”
The Mpact Plastics Innovation and Design Centre is a hub for providing conceptualization, development and design services for customers and prospects. The cross-functional team has a thorough understanding of the “design for recycling” principles and focuses on all aspects such as the design itself, product weight, material process and technology. The team at the center drives recyclable innovation using the latest computer-aided design and model-building technology to ensure that all parameters are met before packaging arrives on the retail shelf.
All designs are furthermore based on filling line requirements, shelf presence, environmental considerations, supply chain requirements, cost effectiveness, preservation and shelf life. Mpact Plastics hasbeen recognized for innovation and lightweighting, and has won a number of IPSA Gold Pack awards for a range of product designs. Projects of this nature reaffirm our commitment to smarter, sustainable solutions.
Mpact Plastics is a leading producer of rigid plastic packaging and cling film, producing a range of packaging and serving a multitude of blue-chip customers within various industries, including products for the food, beverage, personal care, homecare, pharmaceutical, agricultural, industrial and retail markets.
Mpact Plastics Divisional office │ Tel: 011 994 5500 │firstname.lastname@example.org │ www.mpact.co.za
PETCO | Tel: 0860 147 738 | email@example.com | www.petco.co.za