Author: Anne Bedarf

Confused About Plastic Recycling? Provide Your Input on Recycling Terminology!

A wide gap remains between the general public and the packaging industry when it comes to understanding recyclability terms, especially with plastics and the related Resin Identification Codes. A survey by plastics consultant Moore Recycling Associates is attempting to gauge the public’s current understanding of the terminology that their local community may use, and we encourage everyone to participate. Moore Recycling Associates and Re-TRAC Connect … More

Food Waste Reduction Gaining Momentum

On November 12-13, I had the pleasure of attending the Southeast Food Waste Reduction conference, presented by the Carolina Recycling Association along with government and non-profit partners. The presenters and exhibitors showcased a compelling array of activities, ranging from industry initiatives in food donation, organics and compostable packaging collection and processing, and understanding the myriad of triple bottom line benefits associated with waste diversion, including … More

How Important Are the Plastic “Numbers” to Recycling?

The relevance of the plastic “numbers”—officially known as the “Resin Identification Codes” or RICs under ASTM D7611—depends on who you ask. Adamant recyclers often believe they are useful, while time and time again both research and anecdotes show that at least half of the population is confused by them, and this confusion can result in recycling stream contamination. While participating in the ASTM process for … More

No Matter How It’s Defined, Sustainability Requires a Vision

This article by GreenBlue Senior Manager Anne Bedarf appeared in this month’s issue of Packaging Digest, which features a monthly column by GreenBlue staff on packaging sustainability. Read the original article. The recent PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC) report, “Sustainable Packaging: Myth or Reality,” struck a nerve with some of us working to make packaging sustainability a reality. The conclusion of the report, that sustainable packaging is no longer … More

Worms: A Sustainable Solution to Pet Waste

Sustainable Materials Management—being responsible from sourcing to recovery and disposal—extends to all aspects in our lives, and dealing with cat waste is no exception. Most of us in the GreenBlue office have canine and/or feline companions—both of which regularly visit the office—and we have often discussed pet waste and the associated environmental impacts. Now that I have enrolled into a local government-sponsored program, the Rivanna … More

Up and Coming Store Brands

I recently attended the Store Brands Decisions Innovation and Marketing Summit in Chicago, IL, through which I gained a greater appreciation for private label brands, also called store brands or own brands. The Summit brought together a really interesting group of speakers, that included a number of retailers with successful store brands including Walmart, Family Dollar, and Office Max. The first misconception the speakers shattered … More

Sustainability on the Ground: Jam Cruise

I recently returned from a week-long trip aboard the MSC Poescia, as staff for the music festival Jam Cruise, managed by Cloud 9 Adventures. This was my fourth year on the boat, where my duties include administration of the “Conscious Cruiser” program and Volunteer Management under the nonprofit arm of Cloud 9, called Positive Legacy. While clearly cruise ships are far from being ecologically beneficial, … More

Packaging Recovery Label System in Stores Now

We are excited to announce that the Packaging Recovery Label System—a voluntary label developed by GreenBlue’s Sustainable Packaging Coalition (SPC) to communicate to consumers how to recycle a package after its use—is officially in the marketplace! Seventh Generation’s limited edition 180 oz. detergent bottle and new 22 oz. pre-wash spray both now carry the How 2 Recycle label. Both products are widely recycled, and carry … More

GreenBlue Celebrates America Recycles Day

Today is America Recycles Day (ARD)! Brought to us by Keep America Beautiful, ARD brings together organizations and communities from across the United States to celebrate recycling. There are events scheduled around the country to bring awareness to the importance of recycling the valuable resources we all depend on for our lives and livelihoods. Like the “Every Day is Earth Day” slogan, integrating recycling more … More

The Packaging Recovery Label System and Resin Identification Codes

We have received substantial interest in the Packaging Recovery Label System after our announcement of the initial pilot participants this month! We also received some comments focused on the Resin Identification Codes (RICs) for plastic packaging (and durable goods), so I’d like to provide some clarification and additional information about why we are proposing an alternative approach. When we refer to “replacing” the RICs, we … More