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TLMI Launches PET Release Liner Recycling Program

MLFORD, OH | The Tag and Label Manufacturers Institute (TLMI) announces that the association has launched a PET release liner recycling program in close conjunction with Lincoln, Calif.-based Circular Polymers.
For the last year, TLMI has been working with Circular Polymers to qualify PET release liner from association members as a supply stream into Circular Polymers’ recycling process. A leader in using recycling technology to transform post-consumer discarded carpet into new polymer raw materials, Circular Polymers has approved PET release liner as a material that the company can fully recycle. The recycled liner becomes PET pellets that can be used in multiple industries.

For TLMI converter member companies interested in discussing PET recycling with their customers and prospects, specifications include:

  • Minimum volume of labels still attached to PET liner – less than 100 labels per 2,000 pounds of liner.
  • Material should be placed in Gaylord container either loose or rewound without a core.
  • Baled material accepted if there are no cores included.
  • Other methods of packaging the material require pre-approval.
  • PE bags or PE wrap not eligible – must be PET liner only.
  • No paper, wood or garbage can be present in the Gaylord containers.
  • Gaylord containers need to be in good condition (they cannot be split or shrink-wrapped together).
  • One Gaylord container needed for evaluation. Upon approval, first load will then be trialed.

Rosalyn Bandy, TLMI’s Director of Environmental Strategies and Outreach, comments, “This is a tremendous and exciting opportunity both for TLMI and for our industry. PET liner recycling has been a challenge for label converters and for their sustainability-minded customers. The TLMI Circular Polymers program offers member converters a viable solution; something we have been seeking for many years. Given the price PET pellets command in the marketplace, freight and carrying costs are eliminated – making this process cost neutral for both label converters and their customers.

David Bender, Circular Polymer’s CEO, expanded, “Circular Polymers is excited to work closely with TLMI, their members and customers, on recycling release liner. We believe all release liner will be recycled in the U.S. over the next five years."