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Flexible Packaging Enhancing the Identification and Sorting
Sustainable Times Issue 11
Consumers often ask why flexible packaging cannot be put into their curbside bin even if the package is properly designed for recycling. There are many reasons, but the primary fact is that most recycling facilities do not have the proper equipment necessary to sort the flexible materials from the various streams including paper, cardboard, rigid plastics, and glass. These flexible materials end up in either the wrong material stream causing contamination or jam up equipment resulting in downtime needed to remove the material. Fortunately, there have been a few pilot demonstration projects that have proven that investments in the proper equipment makes it possible to separate flexibles from the rest of the recycle stream.
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