Sonoco expands environmental sustainability initiatives

9 August 2018 (Last Updated August 9th, 2018 11:30)

Global packaging firm Sonoco has expanded its environmental sustainability and social stewardship initiatives through recycling in packaging.

Global packaging firm Sonoco has expanded its environmental sustainability and social stewardship initiatives through recycling in packaging.

The company’s latest move is aimed at supporting the food industry in reducing food waste globally by 2025.

“Sonoco believes packaging plays an important role in protecting food from damage and spoilage, while extending shelf life at retail and home.”

As part of its commitment to sustainability, Sonoco is planning to increase recycling of packaging it produces globally from 75% to 85% as well as increase the use of post-consumer recycled resins in its plastic packaging from 19% to 25%.

Sonoco will also make 75% of its rigid plastic packaging to carry relevant on-package recyclable claim.

In addition, the company plans to stop using resin additives that degrade in landfills or waterways as well as prevent discharges from its production facilities using plastic pellets.

Sonoco president and CEO Rob Tiede said: “Sonoco believes packaging plays an important role in protecting food from damage and spoilage, while extending shelf life at retail and home.

“In fact, greater adoption of food packaging technologies to prolong the shelf life of produce and proteins has the potential to divert 72,000t of food waste from landfills in the United States, reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 329,000t per year.”

Furthermore, the company is offering $2.725m to Clemson University to createjoint initiative, SonocoFRESH in a move to solve the food waste challenge.

In its corporate responsibility report, the company highlighted various environmental milestones accomplished such as reducing total greenhouse gas emissions from its operations by 6.2% as well as total landfill disposal by 9.4% over the past year.

Tiede added: “Our mission is to deliver breakthroughs to help the entire packaging industry and ultimately have a major impact on reducing food waste, while increasing access to fresh, nutritional foods for millions of people.”