Plastics Pact invites innovators to apply for the Reuse Catalyst program

The US Plastics Pact is now accepting applications for its Reuse catalysta program to accelerate the development of scalable solutions for reusable and refillable plastic packaging in the United States.

“The Reuse Catalyst aims to support the development of emerging and established reuse innovators, and the industry at large, through shared learnings, expertise, connectivity and amplification,” said Emily Tipaldo, executive director of the US Plastics Pact, in a prepared statement.

“This program aligns with Goal 2 of the American Compact in the Roadmap to 2025especially to increase the amount of reusable and refillable plastic packaging,” Tipaldo added.

Applications will be accepted until October 20, 2022 and companies of all sizes can apply. There is no cost to apply or participate in the program. The Reuse Catalyst is a joint project of the US Plastics Pact, Closed Loop Partners, the Reusable Packaging Association and the World Wildlife Fund.

Companies do not need to be US Plastics Pact participants to apply, but they must test or pilot reusable or refillable packaging business models in the United States. Their models should be designed to collect qualitative and quantitative data on factors such as product performance, economic feasibility, solid waste prevention, and scalability to drive circularity.

“Reusable packaging designs can play an important role in reducing single-use plastic packaging waste and conserving valuable materials,” said Kate Daly, Managing Director of Closed Loop Partners.

“It is essential that a transition to circular and reusable systems is supported by data-driven insights and iterative testing to ensure that we are indeed reducing the environmental footprint of packaging systems. The US Plastic’s Pact Reuse Innovator Support Program helps us collectively achieve this goal,” Daly added.

Criteria for evaluating applicants’ reuse or recharge programs will include the environmental, social and economic benefits of their programs as well as scalability.

Candidates chosen for the program will have access to US Plastics Pact’s network of more than 110 retailers, investors and experts for mentorship, learning and potential partnerships. The US Plastics Pact will also host meetings with participants to collaborate and discuss progress, obstacles and assistance.

Additionally, Reuse Catalyst participants will gain recognition and visibility as official program participants. Those selected for the program will participate for six to 18 months.

“As the preferred inner-loop activity in a circular economy, reusing packaging products in a continuous-use system offers enormous potential for value creation,” said Tim Debus, President and CEO of the Reusable Packaging Association. “Collaborations between stakeholders and service providers are important elements in maximizing this value.”

He added, “The American Pact’s Reuse Catalyst program will help reuse entrepreneurs tap into the pact’s collaborative network of experts to help them develop reusable or refillable packaging solutions.

Ryan H. Bowman