Advocacy Efforts Expand

IN THE LAST issue of the magazine, you learned more about the recruitment committee of the Emerging Leadership Council (ELC). We’d now like to introduce you to the advocacy group. This committee has a mission to create clear and effective communication regarding legislative proposals affecting the flexible packaging industry that can be distributed within the industry and with our customers to best advocate for the entire flexible packaging industry. The members of this group consist of:

  • Clayton Short (chair), product development engineer, American Packaging Corporation
  • Evan Arnold (vice chair), vice president, business development, Glenroy, Inc.
  • Kasie Fairbarn, product sales manager, Windmoeller & Hoelscher Corporation
  • Elizabeth Ryne, strategic account manager, H.B. Fuller
  • Alexis Swanson, global sustainability and communications manager, Liquibox
  • Jason Cagle, sales account manager, MacDermid Graphics Solutions
  • Weston Harcourt, category manager, Sonoco Flexible Packaging
  • Jaclyn Epstein, sales and marketing strategy manager, Mica Corporation
  • Adrianne Tipton, chief technology officer, Novolex

The packaging landscape is evolving. As more companies move forward with sustainable packaging goals and states start to pass legislation around the use of sustainable packaging and its management in a circular economy, it is important for members of our industry to have a firm understanding of the legislative process and how the Flexible Packaging Association (FPA) is aiding.

When the advocacy group first started, the first order of business was to gain a better understanding of the path that bills need to take to become signed into law. The lawyers at Webster, Chamberlain & Bean, LLP, who serve as general counsel for FPA, put the committee members through a crash course on the legislative process, which provided a great foundation for moving forward when reviewing various pieces of legislation that affect our industry. The big takeaway is that, while a bill may be proposed, there is a long, tedious path that legislation has to go through being signed into law, if it even gets that far. Instantly, the group saw the opportunity to relay this to our industry and landed on the idea of an infographic that could be shared—and easily referenced—that simplifies the process for everyone’s understanding.

Thus, the advocacy group created an easy-to-reference infographic that outlines the federal legislative process. The group found a board game-type appearance to best outline the process, and you’ll even see where and how you and the FPA can get involved. Additionally, you will find key terms listed as they relate to the process. This will be a consistent part of the tools the group creates going forward.

Not only is this a great tool to share within our industry, it can also be used to help educate our customers, especially with the rise of Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) legislation and other circularity efforts driven by the states and Congress. 

There is more to come from the advocacy group. You can expect a white paper outlining the basics of EPR legislation, a guide to the federal rulemaking processes, and state legislative flow charts outlining the steps that bills take in different states, as no two states have the same exact process.