Gerber Goes Greener Taking on Hard-to-Recycle Materials in Its Baby Food Products

November 5, 2019

Gerber is going even greener according to CEO Bill Partyka who joined Cheddar Tuesday to discuss the baby food maker's new recycling program with TerraCycle.

Though 80 percent of the company’s packaging is currently recyclable, 20 percent “could be recycled, but they’re difficult in municipal waste-streams,” he said.

With the company’s new partnership, consumers can send in hard-to-recycle materials and the company will recover it with TerraCycle, which has the technology to convert it, he said. Parents sign up online and send in the packaging using a prepaid shipping label.

“We either recycle, we reuse, or we can repurpose,” the CEO added.

Partyka also described the company's three pillars of sustainability — from sustainable agricultural practices to reducing factory footprints to its partnership with TerraCycle.

Gerber’s move comes at a time when millennials seem more interested in — and willing to pay for — more sustainable offerings.

“We rely more on single-use plastics today than ever because they protect our products and they provide convenience,” Partyka said. “On the other hand, today’s consumer is really sensitive to what’s happening with the carbon footprint in the world they leave behind.”

In time, the company will “engineer [products] out of our value chain” if the materials prove too difficult to recycle, he said.

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