The toolbox contains direct links to the latest Collection of additional guidelines, useful tools and helpful information.

Appropriate input fields can be used to narrow your selection. Select a suitable strategy element and the desired language – where available – to restrict the list of results:

Description Provided by
Allianz Design for Recycling Plastics (Only available in German)

The “Alliance Design for Recycling Plastics” sees itself as a link between the public sector, associations, NGOs and the private sector and aims at cooperation within the industry and all stakeholders along the value chain (raw material suppliers, packaging manufacturers, food and consumer goods industry, retail and wholesale, Collection systems, Recycling companies). According to the Alliance, concrete measures of the initiative are:

  • Standardize definitions of terms to promote a common understanding
  • Develop and write guidelines and recommendations on Design for Recycling»
  • Develop standards and labels, quality assurance and testing (with regard to recyclability, use of recycled material, recyclate quality)
  • Promote and support the implementation of the guidelines “Design for Recycling Plastic Bottles”.
  • Information and communication, including training and sensitization of professionals and the media
  • Supporting the Swiss plastics market to provide and use regranulates from Swiss post-consumer collection material
  • Exchange of information and networking with international organizations and initiatives

In addition to current news, excerpts from the relevant policy framework and the guidelines “Design for Recycling Plastic Bottles”, the website also features best practice examples.

Allianz Design for Recycling Plastics
Beauty and Personal Care Product Sustainability Rating System

Sustainability Rating System for Beauty and Personal care products based on chechklist for different topical areas. The sustainability of the packaging is assessed among other aspects. Regarding packaging, the following KPIs are covered with various check-questions: 1. Packaging – Design, policy, goals, 2. Sustainable Sourcing, 3. Packaging attribute communication, 4. Recyclability – Improving Collection and Recovery, 5. Recylability – Sales packaging, 6.Packaging Stewardship list chemical management.

The Sustainability Consortium
Bee – Bilan Environnemental des Emballages

The tool offers a quantitative environmental assessment of a specific packaging based on LCA data. Based on the calculation of the Environmental impact of a specific packaging, the user can optimize the packaging design.

Bioplastic tool for packaging (Only available in German)

Internet tool providing information on the five most important substance groups currently on the market (Bio-PE, Bio-PET, cellulose, PLA, Starch blends). The substance groups are described with regard to ecology, society, safety, technology and quality aspects. Further sub-criteria are land utilisation, life cycle assessments, social standards and migration. In addition to the rated information, a checklist is provided as a tool for decision making.

Association of Organic Food Producers (AÖL)
CEFLEX Design for a Circular Economy Guidelines

Initiative focussed on the circularity of polyolefin-based flexible packaging. The guidelines involve a 5-step roadmap towards circularity, aiming to engage the entire value chain covering packaging design, Collection, sorting, and with specific focus on redesign and usage of recycled materials.

Circular Design Guide

Extensive Collection of information and methods on circular design of products.

Ellen MacArthur Foundation
Circular Packaging Design Guideline

The objective of the guideline is to provide information to all relevant actors of the packaging supplychain on measures to improve recyclability of different types of packaging. The guideline is based on several other guidelines, such as Design for Recycling Guidelines (Plastics Recyclers Europe) or Recyclability by Design (Recycling of Used Plastics Limited: RECOUP). The approach is qualitative, based on a criteria set.

FH Campus Wien
Code of Practice for optimizing packaging and minimizing waste

Guide for EcoDesign of Packaging with a section on Recycling with regard to the situation in Europe, including a checklist to make packaging compatible with Collection for Recycling systems.


COMPASS is a streamlined LCA tool for assessing the environmental performance of packaging designs.
Covers a broad variety of packaging materials and different EOL options (Recycling, landfilling, …). Different levels of packaging can be defined separately. Re-use can be defined for different packaging components separately.
Environmental impacts can be calculated in various impact categories.
The analyzed packaging types are assessed and compared in the following impact categories: Fossil fuel consumption, GHG Emission, Water Consumption, CP: Human Impacts; Biotic Resource Consumption, Aquatic Toxicity, Mineral Consumption and Eutrophication.

Sustainable Packaging Coalition
Design for Recycling Guidelines for PET bottles

Guide for design of PET bottles provided by European PET Bottle Platform. For different PET bottle type, possible (design) characteristics are assessed in 14 categories with regard to their compatibility in Recycling with regard to the situation in Europe.

Design4Recycling Kunststoffverpackungen recyclinggerecht gestalten (Only available in German)

Guide providing tables for different materials (clear PET bottles, PP/ PE, PS, flexible LDPE/LLDPE/HDPE/PP) on design criteria for recyclable plastic packaging with regard to the situation in Germany. In addition, best-practice examples are provided.


EasyD4R (Only available in German)

By means of this tool recyclability of the main packaging formats can be assessed by entering the specific key parameters of the packaging. The Scoring system is based on seven intervalls (A to G).


ECO-DESIGN of Packaging – A Toolbox for Professionals/ Pack4EcoDesign

LCA based tool to evaluate pre-defined packaging types. This covers plastic packaging as well as others packaging types (glass, metal, …). Results are provided in three categories (CO2, water, energy) and allocates the results to different life cycle stages. Can be used to evaluate and compare different packaging covered by the pre-defined types regarding the three categories.

Fost Plus, Prevent Pack
EN 13428:2004 Packaging – Requirements specific to manufacturing and composition – Prevention by source reduction

European standard 13428:2004 outlines a method for evaluating if
packaging material weight and/or volume have been sufficiently
minimized while also taking into consideration other packaging
performance parameters. The standard also includes recommended
methodology for identifying heavy metals and dangerous substances
in packaging formats

EN 13429 – Packaging – Reuse

European standard 13429:2004 defines requirements for packaging reuse and presents a framework for assessment to determine whether these requirements have been met.

EN 13430 – Packaging – Requirements for packaging recoverable by material recycling

European standard 13430:2004 defines requirements for packaging material Recycling and presents a framework for self-assessment to determine whether the requirements have been met. It also provides practical guidance in assessing recyclability.

EU 2018 Circular Economy Package

A package of measures which are part of the EU’s effort to transform Europe’s economy into a more sustainable one and to implement the ambitious Circular Economy Action Plan.

EU Action Plan for the Circular Economy

EU Action Plan which aims at ensuring sustainable consumption and production patterns and fulfilling the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

EU Plastics Strategy

The EU Strategy for Plastics in a Circular Economy which was adopted on January 16, 2018 aims at transforming the way plastic products are designed, used, produced and recycled in the EU. This covers better design of plastic products, higher plastic Waste Recycling rates, more and better quality recyclates among other aspects.

European Certification of Plastic Recyclers (EUCertPlast)

The scheme focuses on traceability of plastic materials (throughout the entire Recycling process and supply chain), and on the quality of recycled content in the end-product. The scheme addresses issues of varying standards across EU countries and the lack of transparency and traceability of plastic materials.
It was created with the aim to recognize recyclers operating according to high standards and implementing best practices.
The certification scheme itself works according to the European Standard EN 15343:2007.

Plastics Recycler Europe
Global Protocol on Packaging Sustainability 2.0

The Global Protocol on Packaging Sustainability provides metrics and a framework for businesses on the relative sustainability of packaging.
I covers a broad spectrum of potential ecodesign improvements and briefly describeds the basics of Life Cycle Assessment.

The Consumer Goods Forum
Information on Bioplastics

The IfBB webside provides an overview on the different available Bioplastic materials, their technical specifications and facts, statistics and practical hints for processing them.

IfBB Institut for Bioplastics and Biocomposits - University Hannover
interseroh Bewertungsmethodik für Verpackungen (Only available in German)

interseroh offers services to test the recyclability of packagings. The evaluation is carried out for three levels (registration system, sorting, Recycling), which are each rated 0-20 points.


“ISO 14040:2006 Environmental management — Life cycle assessment — Principles and framework”

ISO 14040:2006 cover Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) studies and life cycle inventory (LCI) studies. It describes the principles, framework and various phases, including: definition of the goal and scope of the LCA, the life cycle inventory analysis (LCI) phase, the life cycle impact assessment (LCIA) phase, the life cycle interpretation phase, reporting and critical review of the LCA, limitations of the LCA, the relationship between the LCA phases, and conditions for use of value choices and optional elements.

The intended application of LCA or LCI results is considered during definition of the goal and scope, but the application itself is outside the scope of this International Standard.

ISO 18602:2013 Packaging and the environment — Optimization of the packaging system

ISO 18602:2013 specifies requirements and a procedure for assessment of packaging to ensure that the weight or volume of its material content is optimized consistent with the functions of packaging. This is one of several options for reducing the impact of packaging on the environment.
It also provides methodologies and procedures for
determining the amount and minimization of substances or mixtures hazardous to the environment, and
determining the amount of four heavy metals (lead, cadmium, mercury, hexavalent chromium) in packaging.
The process for packaging design, including material selection, is not part of ISO 18602:2013.
The procedure for applying ISO 18602:2013 is contained in ISO 18601.

Nachhaltige Verpackung von Bio-Lebensmitteln – Ein Leitfaden für Unternehmen (Only available in German)

Guide for decision makers for choosing the “right” packaging for organic food.

Orientierungshilfe zur Bemessung der Recyclingfähigkeit von systembeteiligungspflichtigen Verpackungen (Only available in Germany)

Guidance for market actors in the dual system.


Stiftung Zentrale Stelle Verpackungsregister

Assess recyclability of packaging made of: Plastics, steel, aluminium, paper-cardboard, glass and other materials – with regard to the situation in Belgium.

Fostplus/ Pack4Recycling
Packaging Guide

Packaging design guide with regard to the different “conventional” functions of packaging – not an Eco Design guide.

ECR (Efficient Consumer Response)
Packaging in the Sustainability Agenda: A Guide for Corporate Decision Makers

Guide for corporate decision makers. It is explicitly not a packaging design guide, nor a technical document. The guide focuses on how designers, manufacturers, and users of packaging should collaborate to optimize the performance of packaging. Respective practical advices for the management process are provided.

Packaging Sustainability Checklist

The Checklist has been prepared by the Food and Drink Federation (FDF) and INCPEN – the Industry Council for research on Packaging & the Environment. It gives a rough overview on the parameters that need to be considered to develope recycable packaging.

Packguide – A Guide to Packaging Eco-Design

Eco Design Guide. Introduction on positioning of Eco-Design in the overall company’s main environmental objectives, management and design processes. Descriptions (2-5 pages) of design strategies and various links to related resources and regulations and standards.

INCPEN & Envirowise
Petcore Design for Recycling PET Tray

PETCORE has initiated three working groups, dedicated to a) Recycling of Opaque and Difficult to Recycle PET Packaging b) Recycling PET Thermoform and c) Recycling PET Thermoforms


PIQET is a streamlined Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) tool for assessing the environmental performance of packaging designs. Covers a broad variety of packaging materials (including different biobased polymers and recycled content), different life cycle stages (transport, retail, consumer), product losses, and different EOL options (Recycling, landfilling, Littering, …). Different levels of packaging can be defined separately. Environmental impacts can be calculated in various impact categories.

Sustainable Packaging Alliance
Plastic Leakage Project

It concerns a science-based methodology aimed at calculating plastic and microplastic pollution for industry. By integrating plastics into Life Cycle Assessment, companies can identify focus points and design fitting policies to tackle its impact on a product as well as company level. The PLP methodology covers the entire value chain linked to: transport, textiles, plastic products and packaging, and plastic pallets.

Quantis & EA
Plastic packaging – a recycling manual from FTI

The website provides general information on the producer’s responsibility. A quick guide for plastic packaging can be downloaded for free, targetting on improved recyclability. The full guide is fee-based, while members may order one copy for free.

Förpacknings & Tidnings Insamlingen
Plastic Packaging Recyclability by Design

The Recoup Guide is a detailed guidance to the design of recyclable plastics packaging. It comprises material specific guidelines for PET, HDPE, PVC, PP, and PS of several pages each as well as summarizing tables. The regional scope is the UK.

Prevention of Littering through packaging design: a support tool for concept generation

This paper proposes that the characteristics of an object are relevant for its chances of being littered, and that this chance can be influenced through design. This is particularly true for packaging.
Based on factors identified in literature as relevant
to Littering behavior, 15 approaches to reduce the chance of plastic packaging for being littered are suggested.

Renee Wever, Niels, Gutter, Sacha Silvester
preventpack – Prevention and packaging optimization

Streamlined information on Eco Design of packaging.

Fost Plus

The tool is used by RPC together with customers (closed access). The tool offers a visual grading of recyclability (A – F) (similiar to Recyclass grades) and enables indication of light weighting, PCR content, Re-use, and bio-based materials. According to PCR, the objective of the tool is to visualize the “sustainability checklist”.

British Plastics Federation (BPF)
Recyclability of plastic packaging Eco-design for improved recycling

The COTREP Guide is a summary of various studies conducted by COTREP. The guide provides polymer and material specific guidance (for flexible PE, HDPE, clear PET, dark PET, PP) for the design of a recyclable packaging with regard to the situation in France as well as illustrating examples.


WebTool with set of questions to check the level of recyclability of plastic packaging (non-biodegradable and without hazardous substances), with regard to the situation in Europe. Evaluation and identification of improvement options for individual packaging types. It generates a score from F (worst) to A (best).

Plastics Recycler Europe
Requirements and assessment catalogue

Guide/ methodology to assess recylability of packaging with regard to the situation in Europe. The assessment can be ordered from Cyclos-HTP.

Rigid Plastics Packaging – Design Tips for Recyclin

The guide provides basic design tips to make plastic packaging more recycable. It has been developed together with sorters and processers of Waste packgaing.

SEDEX – Supplier Workbook

Guide which provides assistance in improving labour standards, reducing negative environmental impacts and ensuring businesses to operate in an ethical manner. Four areas are covered in detail: Labour standard, health and saftey standards, environmental standards and business ethics.

Sedex Information Exchange
The New Plastic Economy

The report was produced by the World Economic Forum and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, with analytical support from McKinsey & Company, as part of Project MainStream, a global, multi-industry initiative that aims to accelerate business-driven innovations to help scale the Circular Economy. It deals with the question how collaboration along the extended global plastic packaging production and after-use value chain, as well as with governments and NGOs, can help to achieve a systemic change to overcome stalemates in today’s plastics economy in order to move to a more circular model.

Ellen MacArthur Foundation