The 4evergreen Alliance welcomed more than 180 participants, including speakers ranging from former UN Climate Ambassadors to the European Commission to innovators and high-level representatives from across the fibre-based packaging industry. Participants heard about the importance of upcoming packaging legislation and how the recycling industry can contribute to the EU Green Deal.
The 4evergreen Alliance hosted an event packed full of insights and participants this recent week. Meeting for the first time in-person since the formation of the Alliance back in 2019, more than 180 people sat in the crowd at the Autoworld Museum, whilst an additional 300 people registered to join the event online. The event welcomed keynote speeches from former Polish UN Climate Champion Tomasz Chruszchzow, discussing the importance of taking action – and how the unique collaboration of 4evergreen members can spur innovation and further improve the success story of circular fibre-based packaging.
“We should keep in mind the crucial role of packaging. Its design, the way it complies with the requirements of both the market and the legislation make the packaging an important component of the transition needed to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement and to address the today challenges our world is facing. The actions taken by the private sector which is developing real and innovative solutions, thus helping the institutions and public opinion understand how their decisions translate into concrete actions and build a foundation for future development. Initiatives like 4evergreen perfectly fit this ideal, and the success of your alliance will greatly contribute to the so much-needed general success on our path to climate neutrality,” concluded Dr Chruszchzow.
Mattia Pellegrini, Head of Unit B3, Directorate-General for Environment at the European Commission, presented his hopes for the impacts of the upcoming Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive (PPWD). The event was launched with a constructive debate, moderated by Anna Gumbau, on the contribution of recycling toward EU Green Deal targets – participants heard views from across the spectrum – the World Packaging Organisation, EUROPEN, and the Member of the European Parliament Manuela Ripa, shared their perspectives.
The event aimed to create an insightful discussion about the lessons that can be learned from the already high recycling rate of 82.3% for fibre-based packaging across Europe – the industry outline fresh commitments not to rest on this success but to drive innovations throughout the value chain in order to reach the Alliance’s target of 90% by 2030.
Hans Wortman, Chair of the 4evergreen Alliance, reinforced this commitment “at 4evergreen, we have been hard at work for two years now trying to push the boundaries of what can be achieved in designing and recycling fibre-based packaging. Today we have heard what is expected from the European Commission, listened to the industry, and demonstrated success stories from innovative companies. We will continue on our journey as an alliance, and look to bring in a variety of perspectives from across the value chain”.
The Alliance has already reached some key achievements with the recent release of the Circularity by Design Guideline and the Guidance on the Improved Collection and Sorting. These will naturally be living documents, updated as the knowledge in the industry progresses. In addition, it will soon publish the heavily anticipated first version of the recyclability evaluation protocol, which will be first tested by the users, whose findings will be incorporated in an upcoming full version.
4evergreen was formed in 2019 out of a desire to explore various challenges in fibre-based packaging and provide the industry with guidelines and recommendations for sustainability practices. Our goal is to raise the overall recycling rate of fibre-based packaging in Europe to 90% by 2030. Our member companies represent the whole fibre-based packaging value chain and employ 2,6 million people all over the world with a consolidated turnover of around 131 billion euros. All of them have set ambitious targets, clearly showcasing their commitment to addressing the most pressing global challenges.