kp has been manufacturing fresh food packaging made with post-consumer recycled PET (rPET) for almost two decades, making them one of the largest consumers of this valuable raw material. National regulations, such as plastic taxes coming into effect in some countries means there is an ever increasing demand for recycled PET. Alongside a post-Covid world that has seen unprecedented price increases of raw materials, energy, transportation and labour costs, it is vital for food packaging manufacturers to secure material to help keep food supply chains affordable. As all packaging producers in food and drink demand recycled material, it is now essential to separate food packaging from bottle flake to meet demand.
With sites around the globe, kp is working to implement kp Tray2Tray® in its operations at every site. Its pilot site in Pravia, Spain is already using up to 30% kp Tray2Tray® flake in a range of its thermoformed products for protein – with qualified certification from RecyClass. Another five sites in the UK, Portugal, Spain and Germany are producing rigid films for form, fill and seal applications using kp Tray2Tray® as part of their extrusion processes, with sister site INFIA also incorporating it into their processes and producing fruit punnets.
Adam Barnett, President Food Packaging says: “For several years, we’ve been driving multiple work streams globally, collaborating with the entire value chain, including recyclers, expert partners, governments and other stakeholders, to establish new ways to collect and process separate streams of rPET tray flake. Our ultimate aim is to help build the new infrastructures and incentives to collect, sort and recycle, ensuring wherever we operate we will enable full tray to tray circularity. Now we call upon our customers, the retailers and extend this to the industry, pledging to help us create further demand for tray to tray material inclusion in their products.”
In 2021, kp launched “Investing in Better”, a broad and ambitious sustainability strategy with ten time-bound and measurable long-term targets. The strategy is built around three main objectives: Close the Loop, Work Smarter and Act Responsibly. Under the Close the Loop objective one of the targets is that by the end of 2025, at least 30% of the post-consumer recycled material in their packaging will be from kp Tray2Tray® material. kp can report that in their second year since the launch of the initiative, 10% of its post-consumer recycled content comes from trays.
kp Tray2Tray® gained two new prestigious awards in 2021 – Sustainable Supplier of the Year at the Footprint Awards, and Best Food Packaging in the Liderpack Awards, creating awareness of the initiative.