Target takes aim at packaging changes

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Target Corp. is pushing for packaging changes with the company’s store brands that will have an impact on plastics.

The Minneapolis-based retailer is out with a new set of sustainability goals, including the elimination of expanded polystyrene in its own brand backing by 2022, and the increased use of the How2Recycle label on company brand packaging.

“We know our guests pay attention to packaging and its impact on the environment,” said Target Chief Sustainability Officer Jennifer Silberman in a story on the company’s website explaining the goals. “When we provide them with thoughtfully designed, environmentally friendly packaging, we’re able to help them take another step toward sustainable living.”

Target also is supporting the Recycling Partnership’s effort to increase access to curbside recycling around the country, and wants to spur more demand for recycled packaging by creating new end markets for recycled materials by 2020.

The company has joined the Material Recovery Facility for the Future project, which looks to increase the amount of flexible packaging that is recycled. The company also is working with Beyond 34, which aims to increase the U.S. recycling rate beyond the current 34 percent, Target said.

The retailer currently uses the How2Recycle label, developed by the Sustainable Packaging Coalition, on more than 1,700 of its own products but is looking to push that number even higher.

The company wants to be a “a catalyst for change across the industry — aiming for the day when all packaging will be recyclable, and leading the way to a packaging-waste-free world,” Silberman said on the website.