In that time, the company has acted on those goals. Avery Dennison has reduced emissions by more than 30% against its baseline – even exceeding its initial projections. As of November 2019, 94% of waste from Avery Dennison’s operations was diverted from landfills, and the company recycles 65% of its waste.
Plus, Avery Dennison set out to source 100% certified paper, of which at least 70% will be Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)-certified. Today, more than 88% of the company’s paper is certified, with close to 79% of its face paper being FSC-certified.
“Our sustainability efforts are driven by a renewed focus, adaptive thinking and measurable impact to address new industry challenges, answer evolving consumer expectations and meet the high demands of our values,” explains Sarah Sanzo, sustainability and compliance manager, Avery Dennison. “We’re using our materials science expertise to make a difference by inventing materials that are more recyclable, minimizing resource consumption, lowering our impact and investing in our communities.”
Avery Dennison’s product portfolios have been engineered to promote a circular economy. In 2019, Avery Dennison joined the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s Circular Economy 100 (CE 100) network, which provides collaborative opportunities for advancing the circular economy among businesses, governments, universities and other thought leaders.
Avery Dennison is also involved in the Association of Plastics Recyclers (APR) and is one of the APR Demand Champion Companies, which is focused on improving plastic recycling in North America. Avery Dennison has also partnered with Ocean Plastics Leadership Network, Alliance to End Plastic Waste, World Wildlife Fund, Environmental Defense Fund, among others.
Not long after setting its sustainability goals, Avery Dennison launched its ClearIntent portfolio. All of the portfolio’s materials are designed to accomplish several sustainability initiatives. The materials are responsibly sourced, allowing converters to choose from hundreds of facestocks made with FSC-certified paper, or film and paper facestocks made from renewable resources. The products are also recyclable, adhering to the concept of, “What we can use can be used again.” The ClearIntent products also use less material – leading to lower costs.
“Avery Dennison has worked hard to add to our FSC-certified portfolio, growing from 150 products in 2016 to more than 500 products today,” says Sanzo. “As we continue to innovate and evolve our products, we are introducing more solutions that enable recycling or contain recycled content. All of our development work takes place with a central focus on sustainability, which is why so many of our products deliver not only sustainability improvements but also differentiation for converters who are seeking new business opportunities.”
One of ClearIntent’s standout products has been CleanFlake technology, which helps facilitate the recycling of PET containers by enabling clean separation of the label’s facestock and adhesive during the recycling process. The end result is pure PET flakes that can be recycled into food grade recycled PET (rPET).
Currently, Avery Dennison is seeing increased demand for its sustainable products.
“Avery Dennison has continued to see more brands and converters asking about and engaging with sustainable materials,” notes Sanzo. “Recently, we’ve seen a focus on customers that are looking for solutions that enable recycling and contain recycled content. Both brands and converters are excited about CleanFlake technology and being able to have a solution that enables the recycling of PET containers. Customers are also eager to incorporate recycled content into their label materials as more brands and CPGs are holding firm to their recycled content pledges.”
Other recent product launches include the Crush Range line of paper facestocks and AT2550 adhesive technology. The Crush Range has been designed for wine and spirits brands, where the materials consist of recycled paper and organic waste. The products enhance shelf appeal while also signaling environmental integrity.
“Converters and brands can choose from facestocks made with 15% grape, citrus or barley waste, along with 40% FSC-certified recycled paper, as well as new paper facestocks with 30% to 100% recycled content and unique textures and finishes to inspire creativity,” says Sanzo.
Meanwhile, AT2550 adhesive technology has been optimized for thermal and semi-gloss paper labeling. This adhesive is fully repulpable, leading to full recyclability.
“This advance comes at a critical time for the packaging industry, which is dealing with both the explosion in online shopping – and shipping – as well as the increased importance to recycle more of that waste stream,” adds Sanzo.