2019 SPC Innovator Award: Innovation in Responsible Sourcing finalist
Seventh Generation: Flip Top Closure Made with 100% Postconsumer Recycled Polypropylene
Seventh Generation introduced a flip top closure made entirely of postconsumer recycled polypropylene that exceeded their performance requirements for hinge testing, dispensing performance, drop testing, distribution testing, and leak testing, gaining important progress towards their 2020 goal of eliminating virgin fossil-based plastic in packaging.
Why it’s important:
Hinges can be an intimidating design feature when considering the use of postconsumer recycled polypropylene, since postconsumer recycled polypropylene can be more brittle than its conventional counterpart. Seventh Generation and supply chain partners TricorBraun and Envision Plastics worked together to make adjustments and navigate the issues, proving that design challenges can be overcome and functional hinged closures can be created from 100% postconsumer recycled polypropylene.
“Small Dose, Big Clean”
What impact on sustainable packaging has your submission made?
Seventh Generation is closing in on achieving their 2020 goal to ensure that every one of their packaging components are virgin petroleum free and recyclable. Our most recent innovation has been a dish cap that is made from 100% post-consumer recycled plastic, excluding colorant, and can be left on the bottle making it recyclable.
Our initial project goal was to eliminate virgin petroleum, address consumer preferences and be sure that the functionality still met expected performance standards. To ensure success, it was critical that we were designing for 100% PCR from the start. With any innovation, there are adjustments to be made along the way but both TricorBraun & Envision Plastics brought solutions to issues at hand to continue to drive the project forward.
TricorBraun and Seventh Generation conducted testing that included stringent drop testing, leak testing without a liner, orifice testing for optimal dispensing, distribution testing and hinge testing that took the standard number of uses above and beyond the norm. No one expected the performance we received with this material.
With the launch of this PCR closure we are annually eliminating 40 tons of virgin material.