Sustainable Packaging

Innovating a more sustainable future through smarter packaging

The CPG industry is playing a leading role in creating more sustainable products by reducing packaging waste, increasing recyclability and manufacturing with recycled content.

Every one of the 25-largest CPG companies has made commitments to increasing recyclable content, minimizing packaging or reusing material. Eighty percent of those companies are working toward fully recyclable packaging for all of their products by 2030 at the latest.

Beyond these rigorous commitments, the CPG industry is also redesigning and optimizing packaging to reduce the amount required, as well as engaging in recycling partnerships to provide products in reusable, refillable containers.

There are barriers to progress that no industry can solve alone.

America’s broken recycling system

Problems with America’s recycling system — chiefly confusion, contamination and cost — are growing and, if left unaddressed, threaten to undermine our nation’s environmental progress.

There is deep confusion about how and what to recycle, evidence of a broken system where change is imperative. In a GMA survey of American adults, respondents were asked to identify a set of four recycling symbols, yet fewer than half got even one correct. The most common response across all four was, “I don’t know,” even for the universal recycling symbol.  

Shifts in the global economy, notably in China, are forcing cities across America to reduce or suspend recycling programs that are no longer economically viable.

If America is to meet its environmental goals, all stakeholders — public entities, private businesses and individual consumers — must be ready to make hard decisions that will create lasting change.  

Read GMA’s report, Reduce, Reuse, Confuse: How Best Intentions Have Led to Confusion, Contamination and a Broken Recycling System in America.





Join our conversation. Download graphics for social media here