RPC Design has unveiled a grading system that offers information to consumers regarding the sustainability credentials of its packaging through a visual guide, as part of its commitment to the circular economy.

The department is already employing a sustainability checklist to ensure its designs are consistent with the circular economy initiative.

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The existing checklist considers multiple factors, including light-weighting, reuse, and the use of recycled material in the designs, as well as the overall recyclability of the finished pack.

“Our new grading scale enables customers to see very easily how we have considered all the options in making their product more ‘circular’.”

Building on the existing measures and to represent all these metrics visually, RPC Design has implemented a similar system, which is dedicated to the energy and efficiency rating used for products such as electrical appliances, boilers and double-glazing.

The new grading system includes a series of bars of various lengths and colours.

RPC Design manager Brian Lodge said: “Our new grading scale enables customers to see very easily how we have considered all the options in making their product more ‘circular’, particularly in terms of its suitability for recycling.

“It also helps us to identify areas during the design process where earlier decisions may have impacted on the overall sustainability of the pack and therefore make adjustments to further improve its environmental profile.”

Developed by the Plastics Recyclers Europe organisation, the grading scale is based on the Recyclass system, which defines how recyclable a package is on a scale of A to F.

The organisation has also incorporated addition symbols for light-weighting, reuse and recycled material into the grading system.