Packaging Is Awesome with Adam Peek
People of Packaging Podcast
270 - Can plastic packaging be sustainable? Interview with Lisa Huett from Pretium

270 - Can plastic packaging be sustainable? Interview with Lisa Huett from Pretium

About the Guest(s):

Lisa Huett is the Director of Sustainability at Pretium Packaging, a leading company in the rigid packaging industry. Lisa has an extensive background in commercial sales and sustainability, having played a critical role in Pretium’s acquisition of Alpha Packaging. With over 17 years in the industry, she now leads Pretium’s Sustainability and Innovation division, driving the company’s efforts towards sustainable packaging solutions and innovations across its 25 plants globally.

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Episode Summary:

In this engaging episode of the People of Packaging Podcast, host Adam Peek welcomes Lisa Huett, the Director of Sustainability at Pretium Packaging. The discussion navigates through Lisa's journey from sales to sustainability and dives deep into the innovative sustainability initiatives at Pretium. They also touch upon global sustainability trends, especially how European Union regulations and practices are influencing strategies in North America. Lisa shares insights into the complexities of packaging materials, lifecycle analyses, and the importance of designing for recyclability.

In the detailed conversation, Lisa outlines the significant role that Pretium Packaging plays in sustainable packaging. With 25 plants operating across various countries, Pretium focuses on materials like PET, HDPE, and polypropylene, which have established recycling streams. The episode emphasizes the importance of holistic evaluations for packaging solutions, where data-driven lifecycle assessments (LCAs) are key. This episode is a treasure trove of information for anyone interested in sustainable packaging, offering practical advice and insights for businesses looking to enhance their packaging sustainability.

Key Takeaways:

  • Holistic Approach to Sustainability: Pretium focuses on a full lifecycle analysis of packaging solutions to determine the best materials and practices for sustainability.

  • Influence of EU Trends: Sustainability trends and regulations from the EU often make their way to the US, and having a presence in both regions helps companies like Pretium stay ahead.

  • Design for Recyclability: Designing packaging for end-of-life recyclability is crucial, including considering components like labels, adhesives, and inks to avoid contamination of the recycling stream.

  • Customer Education and Support: Many companies rely on Pretium for guidance on sustainability due to the complexity of regulations and the need for tailored solutions.

  • Progress Over Perfection: Incremental changes in packaging, such as incorporating PCR and lightweighting, can significantly enhance sustainability without complete overhauls.

Notable Quotes:

  • "I think the LCAs have helped us do that. The issue that we have a lot right now is perception." - Lisa Huett

  • "Customers want to be more sustainable and comply with legislation, but they just don't know where to start." - Lisa Huett

  • "You have to be material agnostic and approach it holistically. Maybe it's not plastic. Maybe it's aluminum or glass." - Lisa Huett

  • "Designing for end-of-life recyclability has to be part of the conversation." - Lisa Huett

  • "If we could all do a little bit, I feel like things could be, we could be moving maybe a little bit faster, especially on that recycling part." - Lisa Huett


Stay tuned for more enlightening discussions and explore the depth of sustainable packaging to drive our planet towards a greener future. Listen to the full episode and continue following the People of Packaging Podcast for more industry insights.

Packaging Is Awesome with Adam Peek
People of Packaging Podcast
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