"Sustainability is this big, huge issue, and we don't have all of the answers all of the time," she said during the Plastics Caps & Closures 2021 conference organized by Plastics News.
"Priority setting really is one of the most important pieces in this journey. And it really is all of that incremental process, that step-by-step, adding more programs each year understanding a little bit more each year," Price said, that led to the current strategy.
Aptar uses conversations with both internal and external experts to help shape what sustainability looks like at the company.
"We really understand the importance of understanding our value chain and focusing on the topics that were most material to our stakeholders. We took the timeout. We did that strategy setting," she said during the virtual conference.
"It was here that we realized we had to enact some swift resolutions or face dire consequences not only for our business but for the environment," Price said, as the company started to focus on delivering a more sustainable product portfolio.
"I would say one of the big takeaways that we learned on our journey is that understanding the value chain is the most important. Customers, businesses, the end markets of your products, the larger landscape, really helps," she said, to prioritize sustainability efforts.
Having this bigger picture, Price said, helps provide perspective on where the company can incorporate more time, more research or more innovation to create change.
"That's what really helped us understand our business as a whole. What was most important to the sector, but also what was most important to Aptar," she said.
Aptar seeks to work with others to help shape its sustainability efforts and believes these connections ultimately will help the company. This includes work with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation to ultimately create a circular economy for plastics.
"This work cannot be done alone or within a silo," Price said. "I think that's what really helped us prioritize."
Aptar, during the presentation, indicated recycled content in new products was 0.6 percent in 2020, with goals of increasing the number to 3 percent this year, 6 percent next year and 10 percent by 2025. Recyclability of products was 36 percent in 2018, 64 percent in 2020 and aims to be 100 percent in 2025. The recyclability goal includes reusable and compostable products.
"The use of post-consumer recycled resin in our packaging has helped us contribute towards our circular economy goals by repurposing waste from the recycling stream and in some cases repurposing plastic waste from our plants," said Jaimee Given, senior communications and digital marketing manager for Aptar's Beauty + Home North America segment. "Sustainability is at the heart of our eco-design and innovation."