H.B. Fuller, a leading global adhesives provider, has joined RecyClass, a comprehensive cross-industry initiative open to companies actively looking to improve the circularity of plastic packaging and to contribute toward harmonization of recyclability and recycled content practices across Europe.
The initiative brings together players from the entire plastics value chain to optimize plastic packaging recyclability and recycled plastic uptake while promoting the traceability of plastic waste and recycled plastic content in the European region through rigorous scientific testing and certification of innovative materials.
“This is an exciting and challenging period for the packaging industry. Collaboration throughout the supply chain is vital if we are to achieve changes that improve the world for this generation of consumers and the next,” says Elizabeth Staab, H.B. Fuller Global Packaging Sustainability Manager. “Sustainability is a core pillar of our business strategy at H.B. Fuller, and we are joining RecyClass to expand collaboration across the value chain. It is important we continually invest in understanding the full plastic recycling supply chain and its greatest challenges. There are many ways that adhesives can make a positive contribution while encouraging innovation in the sector to advance the industry.”
H.B. Fuller’s strong commitment to sustainability is a source of competitive advantage and drives the company to prioritize technologies that fulfill the future needs of a circular economy, changing regulatory requirements and consumer environmental awareness. In this case, H.B. Fuller adhesives are a very small, and often unseen, part of the final plastic packaging. And yet they are a key performance and recycling enabler. It is a step-by-step process to make packaging more sustainable and there are various levers that can be pulled to get energy use down, make production more efficient, use less adhesive, reduce waste, and enable the recyclability of packaging materials by carefully selecting the most appropriate technology.
H.B. Fuller is continually developing efficient packaging solutions to support plastic applications including PET bottles, rigid plastic containers for home care, and flexible packaging with performance and recyclability in mind. As the industry advances toward a circular economy, industry partnerships such as the company’s collaboration with RecyClass will be key to moving the industry forward.
“The environmental challenges facing the world today and the demand for lower impact products need a multi-faceted and collaborative approach,” said Staab. “Moving forward, major investments – and a certain amount of risk-taking on new technologies and methods – are going to be strategic and will need to be done in collaboration with other players across the supply chain.”