E-Newsletter - A Publication of Interstate Resources


Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Mountaire Farms Convert to Recyclable Compostable Poultry Boxes from Interstate Container

Interstate Resources News homepage: http://news.interstateresources.com/  


Original Publication: Largest U.S. poultry plant converts to recyclable, compostable boxes (September 22, 2009)http://www.greenerpackage.com/largest_us_poultry_plant_converts_recyclable_compostable_boxes#


Global Green USA’s Coalition for Resource Recovery (CORR) has announced a key milestone in its goal of achieving 100% recyclable wholesale packaging through Hunt’s Point Distribution Center, the largest food distribution center in the world. Mountaire Farms, the sixth largest poultry company, and Interstate Container, in partnership with Global Green, have commenced the conversion of Mountaire’s New York City business and its Lumberbridge, NC, facility—the largest poultry processing plant in the U.S.—to Fibre Box Association -certified recyclable and compostable boxes supplied by Interstate Container.

This conversion will result in the transition of 6,000 tons of poultry boxes per year servicing the New York City market alone. If all of Mountaire’s boxes servicing the New York City market were recycled, greenhouses gases would be reduced by 21,000 mtCO2e per year, equivalent to removing 3,800 passenger cars off the road.



Recyclable Corrugated Poultry Boxes from Interstate Container

In March 2009, Interstate and Mountaire announced its plans to conduct trials of recyclable modified atmosphere packaging through Hunt’s Point, the world’s largest food distribution center, as part of CORR’s initiative to achieve 100% recyclable wholesale transfer packaging through the facility.

Interstate and Mountaire conducted multiple trials on boxes shipped through Hunt’s Point. Trials began pallet-by-pallet through Hunt’s Point’s harsh conditions and progressed to the truckload. More recently, a two-week shipping test was conducted where Mountaire product shipped solely in the FBA-certified recyclable boxes. With these results, Mountaire has announced its plan to not only convert its existing MAP packaging to recyclable boxes, but also to convert its ice-pack product to MAP packaging to allow for a full transition of its entire product line to recyclable boxes.

Full conversion at Mountaire’s Lumberbridge facility is expected to be completed during 2010. Packaging at Mountaire’s other facilities is expected to be converted to the recyclable boxes by the end of the 2010 calendar year.

The switch to FBA-certified recyclable packaging is only one component of the sustainable packaging transition. The switch in packaging methods from ice pack to MAP packaging will result in significant water and energy savings. The box size was reduced, and an inner plastic bag was eliminated, also reducing the use of corrugated and plastic. Overall water, energy, and greenhouse gas savings associated with the design and packaging of the poultry is being calculated. The package also passed the ISO 16929 protocol for plastic disintegration in a pilot-scale composting facility.

According to Pete Bugas, national account manager, Interstate Container, “This a major step to permanently remove wax boxes not only from Hunts Point, but also throughout the supply chain in the United States. This box now provides the end user with a recycling option; it also is certified compostable, which is yet another avenue to prevent boxes from being landfilled.”

According to Annie White, director of Global Green’s CORR, “Achieving 100% recyclable packaging through Hunt’s Point would divert over 30,000 tons per year of corrugated from the landfill and would reduce greenhouse gases by 103,000mtCO2e per year, equivalent to taking 19,000 cars off the road, and it would set the standard for greening transfer packaging throughout the world.”

According to Larry Saywell, vp marketing, Mountaire Farms, “Because we’re an agricultural company, we have an obligation to take care of the earth. In order to sustain our business, we need to have good soil, clean water, and clean air to grow our crops and raise our chickens. It is all part of our way of being.”

The Hunt’s Point Demonstration Project is one of several of Global Green USA’s Coalition for Resource Recovery projects dedicated to generating business value through creating a sustainable, zero waste New York City. Among one of its recent projects is its work with seven New York Starbucks stores to launch a cup-recyling program.


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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Interstate Container to Help Transition Mountaire Farms' Waxed Cardboard Boxes to Recyclable Boxes

Interstate Resources News homepage: http://news.interstateresources.com  

Original Publication: The Green Economy, (24 September 2009). http://www.thegreeneconomy.com/packaging-for-the-future/



Removing waxed cardboard from the waste stream is a huge issue, and is currently being solved by a coalition between Global Green, Hunt’s Point in New York City, Mountaire Farms, and Interstate Container.


Doing Good Business
The project has been such a success that Mountaire Farms is planning to transition its entire product line to recyclable boxes by the end of the 2010 calendar year.

Larry Saywell, VP Marketing, said that Mountaire Farms had reduced costs because the new boxes are smaller, resulting in smaller payloads. But he said the biggest unexpected benefit is in employee moral. This may be partly due to the fact that the recyclable boxes help create an even cleaner, dryer and safer work environment.

However, the big win for Saywell - and for the operations people - is the opportunity to contribute to the long term sustainability of both the business and the agricultural land that surrounds Mountaire’s operations.

“Because we’re an agricultural company, we have an obligation to take care of the earth. In order to sustain our business, we need to have good soil, clean water, and clean air to grow our crops and raise our chickens. It is all part of our way of being.”

Partnering for New Ideas
The project, a combined effort between
Hunt’s Point, Interstate Container, Mountaire Farms (the sixth largest poultry company) and Global Green has been a year in the making. Starting with trials at Hunt’s Point, the boxes were tested under the harsh conditions of the largest food distribution center in the world, where tons of pallets loaded with crates of perishables pass through daily.

While sounding to some like a big “ho-hum”, this is a critical step in handling boxes that are coated with wax to prevent them becoming saturated with water and animal products. Waxed boxes gum up recycling machines, so can’t be co-mingled with regular cardboard.

Solutions are hard to come by, according to Jennifer McDonnell, who was
Whole Foods’ Green Mission Specialist for the Northeast Region. She added that she had talked with some store owners who, faced with the problem, simply didn’t recycle any cardboard in order to avoid the additional costs and hassle of training and storage, so that staff could separate different kinds of cardboard.

As Pete Bugas, the National Account Manager for Interstate Container, added, “This a major step to permanently remove waxed boxes throughout the supply chain in the United States.”

The new packaging also transitions from ice packs to MAP (Modified Atmosphere Packaging), a process that prolongs the shelf-life of fresh or minimally processed foods by slowing the natural deterioration of produce, most commonly by removing most or all the oxygen. This means a reduction in the size of the box and the elimination of an inner plastic bag leading to overall water, energy, and greenhouse gas savings.

Annie White, Director of
Global Green’s Coalition for Resource Recovery added that just achieving 100% recyclable packaging at Hunt’s Point would divert over 30,000 tons/yr of corrugated from the landfill. “That’s like taking another 19,000 cars off the road.” To put that in perspective, on any day, the Average Annual Daily Traffic (AADT) traveling through Times Square is 42,000. Removing 19,000 of those would mean about 45% less carbon and more room for chairs on Broadway and 42nd.

Global Green
The Hunt’s Point Demonstration Project is one of several of
Global Green USA’s Coalition for Resource Recovery projects dedicated to generating business value through creating a sustainable, zero waste New York City. Founded in 1993 by activist and philanthropist Diane Meyer Simon, Global Green is the American Arm of Green Cross International (GCI), created by President Mikhail S. Gorbachev to foster a global value shift toward a sustainable and secure future by reconnecting humanity with the environment.

The Coalition for Resource Recovery is a project of Global Green USA, a 501(c)3 tax-exempt non-profit organization. Global Green works to create sustainable urban environments and combat global warming through a unique cross-cutting approach that merges innovative research, technical assistance, cutting-edge community based projects and targeted education and outreach.


Interstate Container is a member of
Interstate Resources, Inc., member of INDEVCO Group.



For More Information

Pete Bugas
Interstate Container National Account Manager
E-mail:
Pete.Bugas@interstatecontainer.com


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