Avery Dennison Label and Packaging Materials (LGM) has launched a scalable matrix recycling programme in partnership with RoadRunner Recycling, intended to help label converters achieve zero waste-to-landfill targets.

RoadRunner Recycling is a growing provider of custom recycling options that has developed an innovative technology platform that includes machine learning algorithms that analyse waste volumes to increase recycling rates. Avery Dennison is a global materials science company specialising in the design and manufacture of a wide variety of labelling and functional materials. Through a venture investment in RoadRunner Recycling’s Series C round, Avery Dennison is expanding the accessibility of matrix recycling and leveraging RoadRunner’s machine learning technology to optimise matrix collection and recycling processes. The pilot phase of the programme is open today to converters in select markets.

Matrix is a by-product of the label converting process that is often sent to landfills because the chemical composition of the material makes it difficult to recycle. The pilot programme focuses on the economics and logistics associated with collecting matrix waste, while identifying recycling opportunities to enable efficient future matrix circularity. The pilot will enable Avery Dennison and RoadRunner to grow the knowledge base that enhances the performance of the machine learning algorithms as more material is recycled. Additionally, the program will explore alternatives to waste-to-energy for recycled matrix waste. The pilot is available in the Maryland, Chicago, New Jersey and Southern Pennsylvania markets.

Jeroen Diderich, vice president and general manager, Avery Dennison LGM, North America, commented, ‘Through the launch of this program, we are proud to lead the way in enabling our customers – and the industry – to address the issue of matrix waste more effectively and sustainably.

‘Working with RoadRunner Recycling, we are able to combine our material expertise and commitment to sustainability with its technological capabilities and operational capacity to address the technical and financial challenges that limit matrix recycling today.’

Graham Rihn, RoadRunner founder and CEO, said, ‘The future of waste and recycling is being defined by technology and working with Avery Dennison will allow us to offer label converters a more effective and cost-efficient option for matrix recycling.’

The matrix recycling programme is the latest initiative to support Avery Dennison’s aggressive sustainability goals. Through innovations like its CleanFlake technology, the RoadRunner Recycling pilot and other innovations and initiatives, Avery Dennison is working to lead the industry in delivering innovations that advance the recyclability of plastic packaging and expand industry access to matrix and liner recycling.

Melissa Tse, senior manager, venture investments at Avery Dennison, said, ‘We’re eager to have RoadRunner Recycling as part of our venture portfolio. Sustainability is a significant focus for Avery Dennison, and we’re ecstatic to deploy capital to cutting-edge companies that share that mission like RoadRunner.’