Plastic packaging advisory group begins work

Sep 9, 2021
Written by Mark Johnson, Senior Vice President of Policy and Government Affairs

WR has been awarded a position on the Plastic Packaging Stakeholder Advisory Committee, which held its first meeting this past week. Plastic packaging use and recycling/disposal are important issues to retailers and many other industries.

Keeping our environment clean and healthy is vital for retailers and their customers and employees. The issue of plastic packaging waste has been debated and studied for many years, and in March of this year, the Plastic Packaging Committee was created by legislative directive.

Retailers want to work with producers, customers, local and state governments, environmental groups, and other stakeholders on proactive, creative solutions that bring tangible results.

The question of primary importance is who bears the cost of recycling or disposal of plastic packaging? Is it the manufacturer that made the packaging or the distributor of the packaged product? Is it the retailer who sold the product in the package or the customer who had purchased the product? Should the municipality’s public works department be responsible for waste collection?

Perhaps an even more crucial question is, how do we incentivize and develop more environmentally friendly packaging options and recycling programs for plastics?

The Stakeholder Advisory Committee will examine these questions and more as they work to find viable solutions to the plastic waste issues affecting our environment before submitting their findings to the Legislature by December 1, 2021. The next committee meeting is scheduled for September 9, today, via Zoom.