Publishers have been urged to adopt new PPA guidelines designed to minimise the environmental impact of magazine plastic wrapping.
Developed in association with WRAP (Waste Resources Action Programme), the guidance recommends that titles include the On-Pack Recycling Label (OPRL) scheme logo, which encourages consumers to recycle Polyethlylene (PE) film at retailer collection points.
PE, the standard material for mailing film and some retail magazine bagging, is also used to make carrier bags, and the OPRL scheme is supported by around 150 major retailers and brands.
Rose Benjamin, Head of Environment at the PPA, said: “Local authority ‘kerbside’ collections are not geared up for PE recycling but the OPRL label enables publishers to send a clear message to readers that they can easily recycle these materials at convenient retail locations.”
Publishers can find out how to join the OPRL scheme at www.oprl.org.uk and PPA members also benefit from an introductory offer of 18 months membership for the price of 12.
The new guidance separately provides updated advice on the use of polypropylene (PP) film, the material used for the majority of retail magazine bags which is recycled by neither retailers nor local authorities.
As such, the PPA recommends that members adopt oxo-biodegradable PP film, which is designed to break down in the upper layers of landfill. The guidance also states that hydro-biodegradable film may be used for home composting but only if clearly labelled.
The publication of the new guidance comes as the PPA opened negotiations with Defra over a new industry-wide environmental agreement. This Responsibility Deal will supersede the existing agreement, which expires in 2013, and commits publishers to a series of actions to mitigate their environmental impact under the Government’s key environmental priorities of waste prevention, sustainable production and recycling.
Key targets will be carbon reduction, reducing the level of unsolds, and adopting environmental best practice. There will be a particular focus on the PPA’s award-winning Carbon Calculator, which is currently being revised to enable publishers to quantify the carbon emissions associated with online media in addition to print and journalistic activities. This work will be unveiled at the PPA’s Environment forum in November.
For more information on the guidance, the Responsibility Deal or to access the PPA’s environmental and ethical best practice guidelines, go to www.ppa.co.uk/environment.