Georgia-Pacific (Atlanta) now accepts mixed-paper bales that contain single-use, polyethylene-coated paper cups at its recycled paper mills in Green Bay, Wis., and Muskogee, Okla., it says.
Through repulping trials, the company has determined it can screen out the cups’ PE coating and recapture their fiber for use in its toilet paper, napkins, and paper towels. To achieve that result, Georgia-Pacific worked with the Foodservice Packaging Institute (Falls Church, Va.) and the NextGen Consortium, a recycling stakeholder group founded by Starbucks and McDonald’s and led by Closed Loop Partners (New York). The consortium focuses on the design, commercialization, and recovery of food packaging alternatives to single-use products.
Georgia-Pacific is collaborating with NextGen to test recyclable and compostable paper cups without PE coating. It also is working with FPI to encourage curbside recycling programs to accept PE-coated paper cups, it says. Visit gp.com, www.fpi.org, or www.nextgenconsortium.com.