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Article  •  16 February 2023


United Book Distributors has reached recycling target 2 years early

We’re proud to announce that Penguin Random House and United Book Distributors have achieved our target for recycled content well ahead of schedule.

Established in 2018, the APCO National Packaging Targets were created to implement legislation against certain materials and set targets for companies to achieve by 2025.

While state and federal governments have paved the way for legislation, it's up to us to play our role in the transition towards a more sustainable future. 

Over the past six months, Penguin Random House (PRH) and United Book Distributors (UBD) staff have focused on improving the sustainability of our packaging, with an eye on achieving all four of the targets set out by APCO. With our commitment to meeting the targets as soon as possible, we're thrilled to share that we have officially ticked off our first target two years early.

Now, our packaging at UBD is made of 51.7% recycled content – a wonderful step towards a circular economy and our sustainability goals. Focusing our energy on items that we knew would have the greatest effect on overall packaging weight, we have sought out sustainable alternatives: 

  • changing the composition of our carton lids to 100% recycled cardboard
  • implementing recycled cardboard poster boxes
  • switching to paper-based tape
  • using pallet caps made of 15% recycled materials
  • new pallet wrap that is only ten microns thick (just over a year ago, we were using a twenty-five-micron pallet wrap)

It hasn't been easy, but the results have been truly astounding.

Overall, we have reduced our plastic usage by a massive 9,656 kg per year!

Thus far, the success of our transition towards a more sustainable future has been truly inspiring. We have no intention of stopping and are committed to improving even further, hopefully ticking off more targets well ahead of schedule. Watch this space! 


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