Aptar has launched a Sustainable Materials Task Force that addresses customer, consumer and regulatory expectations for sustainable product offerings.
Sustainability is a key driver in the market today. Sustainability efforts are now well-integrated into the corporate fabric of a growing number of large and midsized companies.
A particular focus is being given to the ‘circular economy,’ where materials can be regenerated and constantly flow around a ‘closed loop’ system, rather than being used once and then discarded.
The benefits of the circular economy approach are clear for business and the environment – a more effective use of resources means lower costs and less waste, better risk management of raw materials, and improved approaches to the supply chain. This translates to new sources of value for customers and consumers.
The fundamental objectives are to create a reliable network of innovative sustainable material suppliers that have technical and supply capabilities, and to create a robust process with our suppliers to validate sustainable materials, enrich our database and offer ready-to-use solutions for our business.
Over the past few years, Aptar has evaluated and tested a number of sustainable resins at our plants. We continuously search for suppliers and sustainable materials that can be used to replace our standard fossil-based resins and are currently exploring post-consumer resins (PCR), post-industrial resins (PIR) and bio-based materials.
Post-consumer resin (PCR) is a plastic that has been re-processed to be reused in new manufacturing and consists of a blend of recycled resins that would have otherwise become urban waste.
Post-industrial resin (PIR) is plastic waste recovered from industrial processes and consists of a blend of recycled resins from industrial waste.
Bio-based material is made from organic feedstock and carbohydrate-rich plants, such as corn or sugar cane.
The first tangible outcome of our strong commitment to sustainable materials is the recent launch of Aptar’s tube top, snap top and disc top closures made of PCR resin. Approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), this PCR polypropylene is blended with virgin polypropylene resin (50/50).
Further, among all tests being conducted on PCR, PIR and bio-based materials, it is key to mention the recent qualification of the GS and GSA dispensers with actuator, closure and dip tube components made of bio-based material.
The GS and GSA dispensers were the first dispensing systems on the global market to accomplish an LCA (life cycle assessment) and to achieve an EPD (Environmental Product Declaration), and now, with the recent certification of bio-based material, aim to further reduce environmental impact.
Aptar is constantly looking to replace standard fossil-based resins with sustainable resins and has made it an area of focus within the company’s Innovation Excellence organization with the goal of increasing its offering of sustainable dispensing solutions for the market.