Solving some of the major recycling and packaging challenges

Colin McIntyre, CEO of Paper and Recycling Divisions at DS Smith


Our Paper and Recycling divisions have a vital role in shaping how we at DS Smith redefine packaging for a changing world. Colin McIntyre, CEO of Paper and Recycling Divisions at DS Smith, talks about our new purpose and what it means to him.

For me, our purpose of ‘Redefining Packaging for a Changing World’ really sets DS Smith up for helping to solve some of the major recycling and packaging challenges we face in society today. We have already seen how we are doing that in our work on coffee cup recycling, and in our recent report on plastic replacement opportunities. Our purpose is about why we exist as a business, it’s about our sense of being, it’s about what really drives all of us in DS Smith - it’s an incredibly powerful tool that drives our work on both sustainability and innovation.

A key motivation for me is driving waste and inefficiencies out of our own operations, and this is crucial to us providing sustainable recycling solutions and the best quality high performing packaging papers to meet the changing demands of the packaging industry.

Redefining Packaging for a Changing World

Today, as we shop online in increasing numbers, more and more delivery vehicles are on the roads and the amount of packaging in our homes continues to grow. Consumers are getting more demanding - they want access to products through an increasing number of channels and they expect organisations to meet their demands in a more responsible and sustainable manner. How do we protect goods, reduce waste and recycle more? As a leader in our industry, as someone who works with customers from packaging design right the way through to recycling, we are well positioned to meet those challenges head on.

Accelerating Circular Economy

It is with a real sense of pride that I reflect on some of the initiatives I see around DS Smith in these areas. We continue to set the bar high to ensure the paper we collect for recycling is of the highest quality, meaning that paper fibres that should be recycled are recycled. Our work in research and development is focused on making sure that we get maximum performance out of those fibres, ensuring our finished packaging products continue to protect products whilst reducing waste from excess packaging.

Finally, as a business with a closed loop recycling model – we can design, manufacture, supply and recycle cardboard packaging all within 14 days – we have circularity at the very heart of what we do. So, our recent partnership with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation will help us accelerate our circular economy drive, supporting innovation across all of our recycling, paper making, and packaging design and supply operations. The foundation is without doubt one of the leading global authorities on circular economy strategies, so becoming their global partner for our industry is a real statement of intent that DS Smith is truly committed to shaping more circular business models. I have no doubt that sustainable packaging has a huge role to play in helping us to better manage our planets scarce resources and helping to create a long term sustainable society.

Source: DS Smith