Sustainable Packaging Coalition

Industry group dedicated to packaging sustainability

The Sustainable Packaging Coalition is the leading voice on packaging sustainability with a membership that encompasses the entire packaging life cycle. Membership is comprised of global brands, material producers, material converters, packaging designers, logistics, retailers, solid waste processors, academia, and government agencies. This creates a unique space for in-depth dialogue about key packaging material sustainability issues with the full value chain represented.

The Problem

Packaging touches all aspects of today’s material economy and plays an integral role in delivering goods and services in a global market. Packaging uses a variety of often substitutable and competing materials: plastics, paper and board, container glass, steel, aluminum, and other fibers. The industry needed a vehicle for non-competitive dialogue surrounding sustainable material management within the packaging framework.

The Solution

The Sustainable Packaging Coalition was the result of nine founding companies coming together to define what sustainable packaging means, creating the safe space for stakeholders to discuss emerging concerns shared by the entire packaging value chain with a material neutral perspective. The material neutrality invites all material perspectives and places the emphasis on sustainable materials management. The Sustainable Packaging Coalition was born in 2005.


Sustainable materials management is predicated on a virtuous cycle of understanding the environmental and human health impacts, measuring the impacts, tracking progress, and communicating efforts. Much of industrial sustainability is an art of balancing tradeoffs bound in decisions about materials we rely on to make the things companies want to sell. Materials are the center of resource management and as such, they are the limiting factor for continued consumption of goods and services at all facets of today’s global economies. GreenBlue, through its Sustainable Packaging Coalition has used the power of collective learning to help raise the knowledge base of member companies and others on key sustainability issues surrounding material consumption.


Cultivating Stewardship

  • Two annual packaging sustainability conferences that bring together key actors from across the value chain
  • Dinner and Dialogue sessions on relevant big-picture issues around materials
  • Applying life cycle perspective to the collective efforts of the Sustainable Packaging Coalition

Mobilizing Industry

  • Bringing together key industry expertise to create standards and metrics
  • Facilitating targeted dialogue in the form of Industry Leadership Groups
  • Brokering difficult discussions such as forest stewardship

Tools for Transparency

Members Include

  • dow
  • natureworks
  • nike
  • starbucks
  • unilever

Sustainable Materials Management

The Sustainable Packaging Coalition connects to Sustainable Materials Management along all three axes:

Material Sourcing

  • via stakeholder process to engage industry on topical discussions that enhances the collective knowledge base
  • via education by hosting two annual conferences that serve as a central mechanism to engage membership in key issues based discussions and networking
  • via research to create relevant resources that are available to the entire industry

Material Health

  • by making material health a stated part of the definition of sustainable packaging
  • by engaging member companies

Material Value

  • via engaging participants in discussion on how materials flow in society through the municipal solid waste (MSW) system and the role of various waste treatment technologies and infrastructure
  • via research reports that delve into various end of life treatment pathways
  • via industry leadership committees (ILC) that bring together interested parties to in the membership

Industry Leadership Committees

Forest Products Working Group

The SPC’s Forest Products Working Group brings together companies that rely on paper, wood, and other forest products to share their knowledge and develop innovative solutions to support thriving forests and the forest products industry. The Forest Products Working Group takes a unique approach to corporate sustainability by bringing together stakeholders to address unmet challenges in the forest products sector. Learn More.

The Value of Forest Certification

The Value of Forest Certification Industry Leadership Committee (ILC) place tremendous value on the benefits of forest certification. As such, the ILC is engaged in a project to address the challenges to forest certification head-on using GreenBlue’s Value Innovation Process, a learn-by-doing engagement designed to tie innovation and sustainability together to create a roadmap to more sustainable solutions. Learn More.

Cold Chain Packaging

Companies in the SPC’s Cold Chain Packaging  Industry Leadership Committee work to collaboratively address challenges and opportunities in this growing packaging sector. Learn More.

Multi-Material Flexible Recovery

SPC members in the Multi-Material Flexible Recovery Industry Leadership Committee work collaboratively with existing global initiatives to identify and advocate for increased recovery of multi-laminate films. The committees work will be predominately focused on the U.S., but will also examine existing and emerging global efforts.  Learn More.

Learn More

Learn more about the Sustainable Packaging Coalition and the value of membership:
SPC Membership Brochure


Adam Gendell
Associate Director, Sustainable Packaging Coalition
434.817.1424 x321