Alliance to End Plastic Waste member, TOMRA, was featured by BBC News for their work in developing ‘invisible barcodes’ to help revolutionize the recycling industry. TOMRA is working with other Alliance members, including PespiCo, Procter & Gamble and Berry Global, to implement intelligent packaging aimed at increasing recycling rates around the world. This technology requires packaging to be covered in a Digimarc Barcode—invisible to the human eye—but easily captured with camera scanning technology. These scanners identify the material of the product, allowing sorting machines to accurately sort and recycle the items within TOMRA’s recycling plants. Testing has been successful thus far, with a 90% success rate.
Additionally, some packages marked with these barcodes will even allow consumers to scan products at home through an app, which will help eliminate confusions around recycling at the source.
This new technology could drastically improve the effectiveness of recycling, both at home and at the industry-level, and help move us toward a more circular economy. Through collaboration and innovative solutions, we can deliver real results to make the dream of a world without plastic waste a reality.