In a presentation to a PETCO ‘Design for Recycling’ workshop recently,  Kiril Dimitrov from Woolworths flagged some key customer concerns around the environment and oil reserves, recyclability and biodegradability of packaging amongst others. He noted that consumers are becoming increasingly aware of extended producer responsibility believing that businesses should take responsibility for their impact on the environment.

Dimitrov highlighted that the biggest challenge for the packaging industry and retailers is how to define “sustainable packaging”, as this a grey area. To address this, Woolworths’ environmental packaging selection criteria included considerations of packaging weight, local collection and recycling rates and material selection, with a preference for post-consumer recycled content, as well as renewable materials with certified chain-of-custody.

PETCO has developed a fact sheet available on the web, titled “PET Plastic Packaging: Recycling by Design” which is a guide for all those involved in development, design, marketing and procurement. The aim is to encourage designers to consider recycling possibilities, provide guidelines for those wishing to make their packaging (more) recyclable and provide brand owners and manufacturers with information to prevent their packaging inadvertently interfering with existing plastic recycling streams.

The “Design For Recycling” Workshop power point presentation, is also available for download at

(From PETCO Newsletter / October 2012)