Collaboratives are opportunities for SPC members to come together on specific topics in sustainable packaging. They serve as a forum to promote partnerships and supply chain collaboration by connecting members to one another on issues of interest. The shared goal of all SPC Collaboratives is to help guide SPC members and the industry in navigating and addressing sustainable packaging challenges and identifying opportunities. Collaboratives serve as a platform to establish and share best practices and learnings with SPC members and the packaging community, which can be translated into actionable strategies.
No two Collaboratives are alike, as each is designed to address the unique challenges of specific sustainable packaging topics. The format of each Collaborative is developed through thorough planning and will be communicated as the group launches. Although there may be variations, most Collaboratives will fall into three types:
Exploratory Collaboratives are best employed when a topic needs to be better understood before a clear path forward can be determined. The goal will likely be tied to a deeper understanding of the issue, with output related to identifying next steps or prioritizing further action.
Investigating a topic in order to build out the landscape, increase member knowledge base, and discuss challenges and opportunities
Group discussions, brainstorming activies, and presentations
Identifying a gap within the space, or the need to form a Deliverable-Focused or Seminar-Based Collaborative
Seminar-Based Collaboratives bring members together to engage in dialogue, share resources, and learn from each other. These Collaboratives result from the determination that more discussion in a specific area will benefit SPC members.
Members, SPC staff, or guest speakers present on topics of interest that align with the goals, and discuss and ask questions
Provides education and networking value across SPC membership
Focused on sharing and discussing current and future initiatives, best practices, and building value chain connections
Deliverable-Focused Collaboratives are formed to address a clear gap or call to action for a particular project. These can emerge from other SPC activities or discussions, or may be the outcome of an Exploratory or Seminar-Based Collaborative.
Members and SPC staff will work together to develop and produce the identified deliverable
Functions similar to a project with milestones and intermediate deliverables
Example deliverables include:
- A published guide
- Initial framing or design of a tool
- A web-based resource
During the planning and development of a Collaborative, the leadership team will conduct in-depth research of the subject and scope the Collaborative to address the challenges within the space. When a Collaborative launches, the leadership team will share the proposed scope and goals and the tentative timeline of the Collaborative with members. These details will be confirmed with member input and may be modified or adjusted based on member feedback. Collaboratives are adaptable to evolving interests of members and demands of the rapidly shifting sustainable packaging landscape.
Most Collaboratives meet regularly through monthly calls. The Collaborative leadership will keep track of the conversation and key learnings. Even Collaboratives that are not focused on a singular deliverable may develop output such as a white paper on best practices, a presentation at an SPC event, or a roadmap of next steps.
Collaboratives exist to engage and connect members. The SPC provides the platform for conversation to happen, but the representatives of member companies who participate in Collaboratives are the ones who drive the conversation. Expectations and level of involvement may vary depending on the type of Collaborative and specific goals. General expectations for collaborative members include:
Attend Collaborative meetings whenever possible
Actively participate in the discussion, offering insights, expertise, and perspective
Work towards achieving the collective goals of the Collaborative
Work to maintain the conversation within the scope of the Collaborative
Remain cognizant of antitrust guidelines
Contribute towards fostering a pre-competitive, productive, and inclusive atmosphere
Additional expectations will be communicated by Collaborative leadership at the beginning of a Collaborative, or to new members as they join. For example, a Deliverable-Focused Collaborative may rely on member contribution and review of the work product.
Collaborative leadership will consist of SPC staff and member Co-Chairs. The SPC staff identified as the Collaborative Leader will be the primary contact for the group. They are responsible for the development and management of the Collaborative. The Collaborative Leader will coordinate meetings and share information and resources concerning the group. They will also foster discussion, ensure transparent communication, and maintain the group’s focus on achieving the defined goals.
Co-Chairs are individuals from SPC member companies or partner organizations that volunteer to provide leadership to the group. These individuals provide strategic direction and guidance to theCollaborative, as well as industry perspective and feedback to the SPC Collaborative Leader. Each Collaborative will have two or more Co-Chairs, which ensures that the Collaborative is not driven by a single company’s perspective or agenda. These individuals are identified during the planning process and are selected to include a diversity of perspectives representative of the Collaborative as a whole.Availability, interest, background, and expertise are essential factors that are taken into account when selecting Co-Chairs. For longer Collaboratives, the Co-Chairs may rotate every year. Members are encouraged to speak with SPC staff if interested in serving as a Co-Chair for a Collaborative.
Discussing and mapping key issues and learnings on where damages occur in liquids shipping, the testing environment, and sustainable packaging solutions.Read More
Sharing knowledge and best practices on labeling and composting infrastructure for compostable packaging, including both fiber products and compostable bioplastics.Read More
Exploring how companies can support current and future end markets to create more demand for recycled materials.Read More
This collaborative’s studies sustainable end-of-life solutions for multi-laminate flexible packaging.Read More
Exploring the challenges of safe and circular packaging materials and accelerating the transition to safer alternatives.Read More
This collaborative will explore the recovery and utilization of mixed paper (MP).Read More
Developed an educational resource to help companies reach responsible sourcing goals, implement due diligence strategies and verify their fiber supply.Read More
Studied the sustainability considerations relevant to inks, coatings, and adhesives used in packaging.
Studied the role of marketing in making packaging more sustainable and how marketing professionals can communicate the sustainability attributes.