SPI: The Plastics Industry Trade Association and its Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Packaging Materials Committee (FDCPMC) recently launched Project Passport, providing companies throughout the food packaging supply chain with a suite of communication tools and educational resources to help them convey relevant information about their products to ensure compliance and address the concerns of consumers and customers.
“Project Passport is another of SPI’s programs and educational resources that helps take the regulatory guesswork out of plastics manufacturing compliance, leaving these businesses free to innovate in order to meet the ever-changing needs of their brand owner customers and consumers,” says SPI president and CEO William R. Carteaux. “Brand owners are the conduit between plastics companies and the consumer, and with Project Passport SPI is hoping to unite these parties in the interest of clearly communicating the safety and value of plastic products to curious consumers. We hope other companies and sectors in the food packaging supply chain continue to join us to help make Project Passport more complete, more thorough and more widely-accepted across the globe.”
Adds James Huang, director of scientific and regulatory affairs at Bemis Company, Inc. and chairman of the FDCPMC Project Passport committee that oversaw the project’s creation: "Food processors face questions from consumers that are increasingly inquisitive of not only the food ingredients but also the packaging. Supporting the assurance of safe packaging is a complex web of information exchanges across the food contact supply chain, with lengthy questionnaires traveling from brand owners via packaging converters through material manufacturers to commodity producers, and back. Through Project Passport, SPI hopes to streamline the current iterative process by recommending a globally-adaptable system for conveying vital compliance information with fidelity in a clear, concise, and consistent manner."
Project Passport is the result of more than three years of work by the FDCPMC which aimed to devise a more effective and efficient way of communicating risk information about food packaging raw materials, components and articles throughout the food packaging supply chain. The current edition of Project Passport’s Guideline for Risk Communication for the Global Food Contact Supply Chain consists of three separate components, each of which offers packaging suppliers a key tool to help them communicate the safety of their products to companies and consumers further down the food packaging supply chain:
- An Example “Food Contact Declaration of Compliance” Form: The form is generic by design so that it can be adapted to different products marketed in various jurisdictions.
- Instructions: These basic explanations and sample customer assurance statements provide the context to help companies complete the form quickly and effectively.
- Quick Guides: A series of topical guides interspersed throughout the document on select topics to provide added clarity on the instructions.
The current document was developed by a wide spectrum of plastics industry stakeholders, from producers of resins and additives and packaging manufacturers to brand owners, in order to create a recognizable and adaptable system that enables companies throughout the food packaging supply chain to transmit clear, reliable information to the intended audience. The scope of Project Passport focuses on alleviating challenges that manufacturers face complying with food contact regulations in the United States and the European Union, but the FDCPMC continues to invite participants from other industry sectors in order to upgrade and refine Project Passport on an ongoing basis. Learn more at www.plasticsindustry.org/projectpass.