Coles, BioPak and CHEP Australia win big at APCO awards

Coles, BioPak and CHEP Australia are just some of the organisations that have won big at the recent Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation (APCO) awards in Melbourne.

The APCO Awards is an annual event facilitated by APCO, designed to celebrate the Australian organisations leading the charge in packaging sustainability. The 2019 event included 13 sector awards and six outstanding achievement awards focussing on innovation, collaboration and an ongoing commitment to driving packaging sustainability.

APCO works with government and industry to reduce the harmful impact of packaging on Australian communities by moving towards a circular economy. It is the organisation charged by government to make all packaging recyclable, reusable or compostable by 2025.

CHEP Australia won two awards, for its sustainable packaging excellence in recognition of its dedication to collaboration, and sustainable packaging in the logistics sector.

In addition to delivering a global reusable packaging model, CHEP also won the awards for working with hundreds of businesses to build and support sustainable supply chains.

BioPak took home the gong for its outstanding achievement in industry leadership for undertaking a number of sustainability initiatives in the last year, including the development of compostable packaging for single-use food service items.

Biopak founder Richard Fine said, “These awards validate and celebrate the companies who have demonstrated their commitment to meet the goals of the Australian Packaging Covenant.

“We are thrilled to be a winner in the 2019 APCO awards, earning a place amongst a distinguished group by having their achievements acknowledged and celebrated. This recognition means so much to our organisation.”

Panasonic Australia won the outstanding achievement in packaging design for working on a range of reductions and material efficiency initiatives, including a 57 per cent reduction in overall packaging for its 4K BD Player.

Amgen Australia won two awards – the outstanding achievement in sustainable packaging operations award and packaging excellence for the pharmaceuticals sector.

Amgen Australia interim managing director Ciara McKenna said, “Amgen Australia is very proud to have been recognised again this year by APCO as a finalist in the pharmaceuticals category.

“Amgen’s mission is to serve patients, and in doing so we are also committed to supporting and preserving the environment, and to continually make improvements to ensure we are operating as sustainably as possible”.

Coles took home the award for the large retailer sector.

Coles nabs the award for the large retailer sector

Its group manager of responsible sourcing Fiona Baxter said the company released ambitious sustainable packaging targets for its Coles Own Brand – fresh produce and meat packaging to have 100 per cent of packaging recyclable at home or via store drop-off by 2020, while also reducing packaging where possible and increasing the use of recycled content.

“We are working hard towards these targets in partnership with our suppliers. To have this ambition and work recognised is much appreciated,” she said.

Other winners included:

  • APCO Sustainability Champion – Diarmaid O’Mordha for Endeavour Drinks, who was awarded this prize in recognition of his commitment to improving packaging sustainability across the wine industry supply chain.
  • High Performing New Member – Marechal Australia
  • Chemicals & Agriculture Sector – LyondellBasell Australia
  • Clothing, Footwear & Fashion Sector – Hugo Boss Australia
  • Electronics Sector – Dell Australia
  • Food & Beverage Sector – Red Rooster Foods
  • Homewares Sector – LEGO Australia
  • Machinery & Hardware Sector – RYCO Group
  • Packaging Manufacturer Sector – Detmold Packaging
  • Personal Care Sector – ABC Tissue Products
  • Telecommunications Sector – SingTel Optus

Assistant minister for waste reduction and environmental management Trevor Evans who delivered the keynote address said the achievements demonstrate the strength of Australian industry’s leadership in sustainable packaging.

Trevor Evans delivering the keynote

“It was inspiring to hear more about the practical initiatives that Australian businesses are implementing across the country right now to improve their packaging recyclability, to build strong, sustainable supply chains and, critically, to deliver the 2025 National Packaging Targets,” Evans said.

“I look forward to working closely with APCO and all of its members in 2020 to continue to drive such meaningful and important change.”

APCO CEO Brooke Donnelly said all of the winners and finalists demonstrated industry leadership and excellence in sustainable packaging.

“While these initiatives represent different approaches to this challenge – research, design, innovation or collaboration – what they collectively demonstrate is that Australian industry is driving forward with the positive business case for sustainable packaging – and that now is the time for more Australian businesses to adopt an approach that’s both good for the environment, good for business and good for Australia,” Donnelly mentioned.

“With the 2025 target to make all packaging 100 per cent reusable, recyclable or compostable now in focus, industry collaboration and innovation have never been more important.

“The award ceremony was an opportunity to celebrate the achievements of organisations that are leading the way in making this target a reality. We look forward to continuing to work with them in close partnership, in order to share the innovation, learning and insights required to build a circular economy here in Australia.”

As part of the 2019 Awards, APCO also facilitated a series of workshops throughout the afternoon covering the progress on the path to delivering the 2025 targets and a look at what’s next for the Australasian Recycling Label. During the day, APCO unveiled the updated Sustainable Packaging Guidelines.

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