NSF International is working with the environmental group GreenBlue to develop standards for recycled materials. And plastics will be first on the agenda.
The Ann Arbor, Mich.-based group calls itself a public health organization with 75 years of experience in developing standards and providing certifications.
"Brands, together with their suppliers and the recycling industry, are currently facing challenges to incorporate higher amounts of recycled content into packaging. The global standard will help advance adoption of certified material for common packing materials, beginning with plastic," NSF said in an announcement of its involvement.
A stakeholder committee has been developed that includes representation from the plastics industry. Members include Mickel Knight of Printpack; Eadaoin Quinn of EFS Plastic; Jason Pierce of Eastman Chemical Co.; Kate Davenport of Eureka Recycling; Matthew Realff of Georgia Tech; Rachel Goldstein of Mars Inc.; Eric DesRoberts of Ocean Conservancy; Andy Smith of King County, Wash.; and Jennifer McCracken of Havi Group.
RMS aims to "serve as a voluntary, market-based tool to be implemented by value chain participants and audited independently by credible third-part certification bodies," according to its website. "The purpose of the standard is to address some of the challenges that brands, their suppliers and the recycling industry are facing in trying to incorporate higher amounts of recycled content into packaging or finished products."
The program said it will use "two independent tracking system options," including a chain-of-custody system to prove RMS-certified products come from recovered materials, derived from post-consumer and post-industrial sources.
Another approach will "attributes of recycled content," described as a "certificate-based trading scheme tracked through a registration body to provide an investment mechanism for new processing capacity."
The stakeholder committee is meeting this week at the Sustainable Packaging Coalition Advance 2019 conference in Denver Oct. 7-9.