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Recycled board rates well

It's not surprising that a survey commissioned by the Recycled Paperboard Alliance found that 100% recycled paperboard packaging compared favorably to SBS in conveying the attributes of attractiveness, performance, and quality.

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Prepared by Fort Lee, NJ-based Leflein Associates, the study included 400 "mall concept interviews" with adult female primary household shoppers in Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, and Edison, NJ. Conducted in two phases last year, the study showed that 61% of shoppers said they were more inclined to buy products from a company using 100% recycled board. Moreover, 31% said they would be willing to pay up to 5% more for products in such packaging.

The study rated recycled cartons vs SBS for five similar consumer products, though different brands. These included cartons for toothpaste, tea, crayons, red beans and rice, and ham. Results showed consumers found it difficult to distinguish between recycled and SBS. There was little difference reported in the attractiveness of the two materials. In every instance, the majority of shoppers rated the recycled package either better or no different from SBS in terms of quality perception. Recycled board also fared well in package performance that compared brightness, resistance to ripping or tearing, keeping the product clean, and protecting product from damage.

Compared to a 1998 RPA study, the 2000 results showed that environmental consciousness seemed to be slipping. The study also showed that only 44% of respondents were familiar with the newer 100% Recycled Paperboard™ symbol (shown), compared with 81% recognition for the older "chasing arrows" symbol.

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