Go Nature. Go Carton.


Improving recycling from the start

Tetra Pak carton packages are recyclable today1, and we are working in enhancing packaging design to support a less complex recycling process. The goal is to make carton packages more attractive for recyclers to process, ultimately increasing recycling rates.

Package design can help improve recycling rates

Design for recycling means implementing the entire recycling lifecycle into the design of the package from the start. We are investing heavily in the research and development of carton packages that are made with a simplified material structure and increased paper-based content.

When designing food packaging, manufacturers have a wide range of requirements to manage and balance. For example, while continuously improving sustainability performance, food safety should not be compromised, and consumer functionality needs to remain. It is crucial to understand the entire value chain from the sourcing of packaging materials to distribution and consumption to when the materials are processed by a recycling facility after use. 

Taking a circular approach to food package design

In a circular economy, waste is eliminated, materials are recycled and re-used, and natural systems are regenerated, reducing manufacturing impact on the environment. We are taking a circular approach to the design of our food packages. 

This means we are accelerating the development of circular packaging by increasing the use of renewable and recycled materials. We’re designing packaging made with a simplified material structure and increased paper-based content along with solutions that help prevent littering.

Renewable content is material that comes from renewable sources, such as wood or sugarcane, that grow back and absorb CO2 from the atmosphere as they grow. Using renewable raw materials lets us reduce the package’s carbon footprint. We are accelerating the expansion of paper straws as an alternative to plastic straws.

Using recycled materials helps reduce waste, keeping materials in use for longer. We have recently introduced certified recycled polymers, and we are committed to introduce 10% recycled plastic content across our carton packages in Europe by 2030, contributing to the use of recycled plastics. 

When it comes to reducing litter and plastic waste, our tethered caps portfolio helps minimise litter as the cap stays attached to the package after opening. 

Recycling focus areas

1Carton packages are collected and recycled worldwide, where waste management and recycling infrastructure is in place.