Stretch Film Recycling With Coca-Cola Consolidated

May 20, 2024

We’re excited to announce that in partnership with our valued customer, Coca-Cola Consolidated, our Stretch Film Recycling Program is currently creating post-consumer recycled (PCR) resin from used and recaptured stretch film!

To reduce carbon emissions and the use of virgin material, we are creating a pilot closed-loop system for Coca-Cola Consolidated’s stretch film by reclaiming the high-quality film that we sell them so that it can be reused in new stretch film applications.

Stretch film is essential for business-to-business logistics and allows pallets of products to make it safely through the supply chain efficiently and without damage. At Atlantic, we work with our clients to optimize their stretch film application for maximum load containment with minimal material usage through our MUST Stretch Film Management Program. When the ideal amount of high-end stretch film is applied to each individual load of products consistently, this results in less wasted stretch film and less plastic entering the waste stream for improved sustainability.

Post-consumer recycled content, or PCR, refers to materials that have been used by consumers, collected, recycled, and then repurposed into new products. The term PCR is mostly used when discussing plastics and may also be referred to as “post-consumer resin” or post-consumer waste (PCW). Our Stretch Film Recycling Program turns used stretch film into PCR resin pellets that are then able to be repurposed into PCR stretch films for continued use in packaging applications. PCR material usage is critical for creating a more circular economy and more sustainable future because it reduces the use of virgin material, decreases energy use, lowers emissions, and encourages landfill avoidance through waste reduction.

Extended producer responsibility (EPR) legislation is also incentivizing or mandating the use of PCR in plastics in many states in the United States. Investments driven by EPR will improve recycling collection, education, and infrastructure that support cleaner streams of recycled materials. As the largest privately held packaging company in North America, Atlantic is working to assist our clients in making the transition to a circular economy as smooth as possible.

After bales of used performance stretch film are collected and sorted for contaminants, our Stretch Film Recycling Program shreds and granulates film into fine pieces that are filtered, extruded, and deodorized resulting in top-quality PCR resin pellets. These resin pellets can then be sent to our film manufacturing partners to be transformed into new rolls of stretch film that contain recycled content.

We would not be able to have such great success in our stretch film recycling efforts without the valuable support from our partners, both upstream and downstream in the supply chain. Thank you to our customers and suppliers for helping us create a more circular economy!