Two of the heavyweight U.S. plastics industry associations are joining forces to tackle rigid packaging issues like recycling and growth opportunities.
The Society of the Plastics Industry Inc. announced Dec. 11 it will begin partnering with the American Chemistry Council on Jan. 1. SPI's thermoforming committee will work with ACC's rigid plastics packaging group. The latter group advocates on behalf of rigid plastics producers to advance their products as sustainable choices, to fight unnecessary regulation and to increase collection and recycling.
“This partnership maximizes efficiencies and enhances rigid packagers' shared mission to increase plastics recycling,” noted Jamie Clark, chair of the ACC rigids group, in a news release. Clark is vice president and general manager of film extruder and thermoformer Printpack Inc. of Atlanta and an officer-at-large on SPI's board.
Other executives in the partnership include Brent Beeler, past president of the ACC rigids group, and Dan Mohs, CEO of thermoformer Placon Corp. of Madison, Wis., and chairman of the SPI committee. Ashley Carlson Consulting LLC of Boston will provide support staff for the partnership and retain its packaging team role at ACC.
Mohs said SPI will form a rigid plastics division comprising two subgroups. ACC's rigids group will merge with SPI's thermoformers committee for a subgroup focused on packaging. Transportation and industrial rigid plastics will comprise the other subgroup.
The partners plan a rigid plastics packaging conference in spring 2014.
SPI cited a project in Virginia as the type of work its new rigid plastics division will pursue. ACC's rigids group has been working in the Virginia Peninsula to pilot an expanded rigids collection program for non-bottle collection and recycling.
SPI President and CEO William Carteaux and ACC vice president Steve Russell said their associations want to leverage their efforts to support processors in the sector.
“It is our hope that by having just one team we can gain efficiencies, be more effective and increase member engagement,” Russell said.