APCO congratulates Australian businesses for packaging sustainability excellence

19 November 2021

Some of Australia’s most recognisable businesses were celebrated yesterday for their work towards improving packaging sustainability as part of the Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation’s (APCO) Annual Awards ceremony. Businesses including Kellogg, Nestlé, Coles, BioPak, and CHEP were among the big winners, each taking home multiple accolades.

In total, 22 awards were handed out to businesses in industry sectors as diverse as retail, electronics, manufacturing, healthcare, food and beverage, and agriculture. The finalists and winners (full list below) were recognised for their best practice approach to sustainable packaging design, industry leadership and sustainability education.

Kellogg Australia took home the ceremony’s main prize, the Sustainable Packaging Excellence Award, for their work to optimise 99% of packaging for material efficiency along with the continued application of the Australasian Recycling Label on the company’s packaging. The company now has more than 75% of their packaging labelled as recyclable through the Australian kerbside or REDcycle system.

BioPak Founder Richard Fine took home the coveted Sustainability Champion Award in recognition of his tireless work championing compostable packaging and driving progress towards both the National Packaging Targets and the National Food Waste Strategy Targets.

Meanwhile, the Our Packaging Future (OPF) Awards, which celebrate projects and initiatives designed specifically to help Australia reach the 2025 National Packaging Targets, counted several well-known companies among its winners.

Nestlé Australia took home both the OPF Award for end-market leadership, for Australia's first chemically recycled content soft food wrapper and the OPF Award for sustainability education (for consumers) for the KITKAT "Give the Planet a Break" recycling campaign.

BioPak was awarded the OPF Award for Improved Collection and Recycling Systems for Compost Connect, a food service focused organic recycling initiative and online platform.

Coles was recognised in the OPF Award for sustainability education (for industry) for its packaging data project across the Coles Own Brand supplier base.

Other award recipients included Beacon Lighting (Outstanding Achievement in Sustainable Packaging Operations) Beacon has fully optimised its distribution packaging and no longer uses any outer packaging on products that are shipped to Australia from overseas suppliers. Returnable wooden pallets are now in place for store deliveries and large commercial shipments.

Also recognised was Austcor (Outstanding Achievement in Sustainable Packaging Outcomes), which has successfully optimised all of its packaging by developing stronger boxes with light-weighted paper, and CHEP Australia (Outstanding Achievement in Leadership), for increasing the uptake of the company’s ‘Share and Reuse’ circular packaging solutions. This has saved over 120 tonnes of carbon emissions through transportation optimisation, increasing pallet stacks, maximising loads and re-routing its journeys.

Brooke Donnelly, CEO, APCO commented: “. Each and every finalist recognised here has demonstrated strong leadership and innovation over the last twelve months and we’ve witnessed many success stories that highlight the very essence of what Australia needs to achieve the 2025 National Packaging Targets – collaboration.

It’s fantastic to see APCO’s Members continue to deliver such impressive initiatives as we all work together to achieve a circular economy for packaging in Australia.”

​APCO is a not-for-profit organisation leading the development of a circular economy for packaging in Australia. It is the organisation charged by government to facilitate Australia’s 2025 National Packaging Targets. For more information about the APCO Annual Awards visit www.apco.org.au/2020-apco-awards.

The winning companies in the 2021 Awards were: 

Industry Sector award winners

  • Agriculture & Nurseries – Evergreen Garden Care Australia
  • Airline, accommodation and tourism – Virgin Australia
  • Chemicals, Hardware and Machinery – General Motors Australia
  • Electronics - Kyocera Document Solutions
  • Food and Beverage – Kellogg Australia
  • General Merchandise and Apparel – 3M Australia
  • Healthcare and Scientific – Amgen Australia
  • Large Retailer – Coles
  • Logistics and Warehousing – CHEP Australia
  • Packaging Manufacturers and Suppliers – Lyondell Basell
  • Telecommunications – Optus
  • Tobacco – British American Tobacco

Outstanding Achievement Awards

  • Outstanding Achievement in Industry Leadership – CHEP Australia
  • Outstanding Achievement in Sustainable Packaging Outcomes – Austcor
  •  Outstanding Achievement in Sustainable Packaging Operations – Beacon Lighting
  • High Performing New Member Award - Arcadian Organic & Natural Meat Co

Our Packaging Future Awards

  • Our Packaging Future Award for end-market leadership – Nestlé Australia
  • Our Packaging Future Award for Improved Collection and Recycling Systems – BioPak
  • Our Packaging Future Award for Packaging Sustainability Education – Consumer Education – Nestlé Australia
  • Our Packaging Future Award for Packaging Sustainability Education – Industry Education – Coles

APCO Sustainability Champion Award

  • Richard Fine, BioPak

Sustainable Packaging Excellence Award

  • Kellogg Australia




Notes to Editors:




About APCO (www.apco.org.au)

The Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation (APCO) is a not-for-profit organisation leading the development of a circular economy for packaging in Australia. APCO works with governments, businesses and other organisations from across Australia’s large and complex packaging value chain to develop the insights, resources and programs that are needed to build a sustainable national packaging ecosystem. In 2018, APCO was endorsed by government to lead the delivery of Australia’s 2025 National Packaging Targets and ensure all packaging is reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2025. To achieve this goal, APCO is working closely with government and industry to deliver a range of sustainable design, recycling, waste to landfill reduction and circular economy projects. Recognised as one of Australia’s leading product stewardship organisations with a strong national and global collaborative network, APCO is committed to reducing the environmental impact of packaging on Australian communities by moving towards a circular economy.

Media contact:

Horizon Communication Group

Alex Whitaker