The tool has been developed for brands, retailers and designers to use at the earliest stages of packaging design, to assess whether the packaging can be easily recycled, and adjust the product’s features to ensure it can.
PackScore, which is supported by RECOUP and based off the Recyclass system developed by Plastics Recyclers Europe, allows users to answer a series of simple questions in order to receive a recyclability rating from A – F. The tool also highlights features of the packaging such as light-weighting or the use of recycled content, that help ensure efficient use of resources.
As packaging producers come under scrutiny in the wake of programmes like BBC’s War on Plastic, PackScore promises to help designers create products that are more sustainable. By experimenting with combinations of materials and decorations, brands can improve their packaging recyclability rating at an early stage, before the product is manufactured.
BPF Director General, Philip Law, commented on the launch:
“The BPF is proud to announce the launch of PackScore, and hopes everyone from brand managers, packaging designers and retailers use the tool. It can play a vital role to facilitate conversations when it comes time to design new products, and help decision makers ensure their products are designed to be recycled.”
The design of packaging often involves collaboration between designers, manufacturers, and brands. PackScore has been created to sit at the earliest stage in this often lengthy process, particularly for individuals without extensive technical knowledge, or for where exact material specification is not known.
Other eco-design tools typically require more technical detail than is often to hand at an early stage, and PackScore has been developed as a simplified tool to fill this gap in the market. The tool is designed to be easy to use, and works also to educate, and to help steer the final design to ensure sustainability is part of the conversation between all involved in the creation of plastic packaging.
The tool was originally produced by Berry International and subsequently developed by the BPF. The grading level is advisory and is only intended to be a guide during the design process. A more comprehensive tool such as Recyclass is recommended in order to obtain an official certification of recyclability.