The 4evergreen alliance has released a second version of its Circularity by Design guideline, adding guidance on designing beverage packaging for recycling.

This addition to the package – which already includes the Recyclability Evaluation Protocol and Guidance on the Improved Collection and Sorting of Fibre-based Packaging for Recycling – turns its attention to used beverage cartons (UBC) and similar packaging. It aims to provide manufacturers with an industry-backed reference for designing such packs for recycling and help the packaging sector keep fibre-based materials in the production loop for as long as possible.

The recommendations were established through expert-led research and discussions taking place over several months. They aim to cover fibre-based composite packaging types and serve as a point of reference for designers to match their packaging products with specialised recycling processes.

4evergreen hopes that policymakers for upcoming recyclability, collection, and sorting – especially the Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation – will utilise its tools as a knowledge basis from industrial players.

“We are delighted to have finalised this second version of the guideline,” says Hans Wortman, chair of the 4evergreen alliance. “It is the result of a meticulous screening of existing knowledge and in-depth expert research and discussions across the entire value chain.

“That’s what makes our guideline unique. We now have a functional and holistic document where designers can find reliable recommendations to ensure fibre-based packaging is designed with circularity in mind.”

A final version of the guideline is scheduled to be published in 2024. This is set to include design recommendations for floatation deinking mills and specialised mills for fibre-based composite packaging.

The first Circularity by Design guideline was released last year in a bid to provide a clear parameters for designing fibre-based packaging for recycling. It offers design tables for each product group and provides recommendations for the standard recycling process.

This was followed by the beta version of its Fibre-Based Packaging Recyclability Evaluation protocol, which was intended to improve and standardise the framework for evaluation packaging products’ recyclability in European waste streams.

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