Graham Packaging Wins SPC Innovator Award

Graham Packaging received the Sustainable Packaging Coalition’s (SPC) Innovator Award for Innovation in Recovery for its REFPET returnable, refillable PET containers.

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With the addition of a patented texture, Graham's REFPET bottles maintain their shelf appeal for up to 25 reuse cycles.
With the addition of a patented texture, Graham's REFPET bottles maintain their shelf appeal for up to 25 reuse cycles.

SPC recognized Graham’s containers as a leading sustainability solution that results in 47% longer reuse cycles than its previous generations of REFPET bottles.

Graham’s REFPET containers have been used to package beverages for large, well-known brands for over 30 years, but a recent creative upgrade solved a persistent challenge that faces most reusable packaging. When a bottle is reused, significant wear and scuffing can occur, which reduces the number of times the bottle can be reused before its aesthetic properties become unacceptable.

To combat this problem, Graham added a bubble texture to their REFPET Generation III bottles. This texture has increased the containers’ average number of reuse cycles from 17 to 25. The SPC recognized this effort by awarding Graham with a 2020 Innovator Award for Innovation in Recovery. They also noted that rather than avoiding the problem, the Graham team embraced the challenge to create a solution that both mitigated a loss and enhanced the visual appearance of the container.

“For us, sustainability is a part of everything we do, and innovation is core to who we are,” said Tracee Auld, chief sustainability officer at Graham Packaging Company. “To be recognized by a body such as the Sustainable Packaging Coalition says a lot about where we are already and where we need to continue to focus our efforts to deliver innovative, sustainable products.”


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