Amcor announced it is the first company to purchase certified circular polyethylene material using ExxonMobil’s Exxtend™ technology for advanced recycling. Amcor will leverage this new material across its global portfolio, providing customers in healthcare and food industries with more recycled content in a variety of solutions and applications. Increasing the use of advance recycling materials, such as circular polymers, is one way Amcor is meeting its sustainability pledge to develop all of its packaging to be recyclable or reusable by 2025. The use of these materials will significantly add to the 113,000 metric tons of recycled material Amcor used in its packaging in fiscal year 2021. The technology behind advance recycling materials allows plastic waste to be converted into brand new products that are no different in quality and performance from ones made with virgin raw materials, providing customers peace of mind and the benefit of increasing the use of recycled content in their packaging.
At Crown, we continue to prioritize initiatives that enhance sustainability and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. This is reflected in our Twentyby30 sustainability strategy, which includes a commitment to dedicate at least half of Research & Development (R&D) efforts toward minimizing the footprint of our products and manufacturing processes. Our ambitious plan also strives to decrease GHG emissions by reducing packaging material use by making aluminum cans 10% lighter in weight by 2030 (compared to a 2019 baseline).
In 2021, after several years of intensive development efforts, our R&D and Customer Technical Services (CTS) teams achieved a 4% global average reduction in our standard 12 oz. (330 ml) can weight. The CTS team, composed of expert engineers offering training and production analysis support, was pivotal in ensuring these lighter-weight cans did not sacrifice performance or the critical barrier and strength properties that brand owners’ demand. Lightweighting efforts add to metal’s superior properties in terms of recyclability and the benefits are compounded as the material circulates through the process time and time again. Weight reductions allow us to produce more cans with the same amount of aluminum used previously for standard cans, which has a positive impact on GHG emissions through energy savings.
To celebrate these achievements, our own commemorative can, known as “Libra,” was born. Weighing less than 10 grams, it is a creative way to celebrate years of collaborative partnership with our customers, who helped us achieve this lightweighing milestone by making their equipment available for full line filling and processing simulations with the CTS team. The commemorative cans were decorated using our advanced Accents™ variable printing technology and feature 24 different variations printed across two runs. They were produced in our plant in Kechnec, Slovakia.
All Crown employees in the EMEA region received a personalized “Libra” can as part of the celebration. The design also features a quick response (QR) code which links directly to a fun and engaging augmented reality experience about recycling, developed by Zappar. Players were challenged to recycle cans to score points and were able to take a quiz to test their knowledge about metal recyclability and increase education about the issue.
We are confident that the “Libra” can will be among many more celebrations with customers, suppliers and industry partners as we support the transition to the Circular Economy together.