PPA urges publishers to promote magazine wrap recycling
By Hannah Jordan Tuesday, 14 August 2012
New Professional Publishers Association (PPA) guidance advises publishers to join a membership scheme designed to encourage better public magazine polywrap recycling.
The guidance, developed in partnership with the Waste Resources Action Programme (WRAP) and available on the PPA website, recommends that publishers join the On-Pack Recycling Label (OPRL) scheme, membership of which will enable them to adopt OPRL logos on their titles.
The logos, which can be printed onto plastic film, a carrier sheet or onto the title itself, advise consumers on the most suitable disposal method for their plastic wrap.
A new logo, for use on publications wrapped in polyethylene (PE), the industry standard ‘polywrap’ used for carrier bags and some magazine wrapping, states that the wrap must be recycled at larger retailers instead of in kerbside collection bins, as most local authorities are not equipped to recycle PE film.
The second logo, for use with polypropelyne (PP) plastic wrap, the non-recyclable material used in the majority of retail magazine bags, tells consumers not to dispose of the film amongst their recycling waste.
Annual subscription to the scheme, for which PPA members receive an introductory discount, costs £700 for businesses with a turnover of more than £5m and £275 per year for SMEs.
Commenting on the new logo PPA head of environment Rose Benjamin said: "The OPRL label enables publishers to send a clear message to readers that they can easily recycle these materials at convenient locations."
Condé Nast Britain production director Sarah Jenson said the publisher was looking into the proposal in detail. "Design, ink levels and film weight of the bags are considerations. Of course were the initiative to be free of charge that would be one less barrier to entry!"
The new guidance also advises publishers using the more common PP film to instead adopt oxo-biodegradable PP film which is able to break down in the upper layers of landfill waste sites. It also suggests the use of hydro-biodegradable film as long as clear labelling informs the consumer that it should be composted at home.
Jenson said: "Condé Nast is very mindful of the various environmental issues inherent in the industry - we currently carry the d2w logo on our polybags to advise consumers that we use oxo-biodegradable polypropylene film and we encourage and promote recycling within our printed magazines.
"We aim to reach a decision by September."
Meanwhile the PPA is working with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) on the development of a new ‘Responsibility Deal’, an industry-wide agreement that sets environmental standards to which publishers must adhere.
Under the current agreement, which is due to expire in 2013, publishers must meet agreed efficiencies under the government’s recycling, waste prevention and sustainable production priorities.
The new Responsibility Deal will centre on carbon reduction and cutting unsold publication volume while particular emphasis is expected to be made on the PPA’s Carbon Footprint Calculator. The stand-alone programme, launched in 2009 and only available to PPA member companies, allows publishers to analyse and quantify the carbon footprint of their individual magazine titles.
An updated version of the programme, which will allow users to analyse carbon footprint associated with their online activity, is due to be unveiled at the PPA’s environment forum in November.
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