Caring for our environment

Working with plastics, it is extremely important that we respect and protect the world we live in and do as much as we can to reduce our impact on the environment.

At Pharmapac, our efforts toward environmental sustainability relate to what we produce and how we produce it. We stay up-to-date on the latest packaging developments and we ensure all new packaging is fully recyclable. Energy and water efficiencies are built into our manufacturing plant and a regrind and recycling facility onsite allows us to process post manufacturing recyclate for reuse in certain products.

For years Pharmapac has put  measures in place to make our production methods and our products as environmentally friendly as possible.  It is important to us to do more than just “talk the talk” of sustainability and eco-awareness, and to make real changes in how we care for our planet. We are an Enviromark Diamond Accredited manufacturer, an Operation Clean Sweep partner (ensuring zero pallet, flake and powdered plastic enters our marine environment) and ISO 90012015 accredited.

When you purchase a Pharmapac product, you can feel good about buying from  a company that ethically manufactures using environmentally responsible processes that are independently audited and verified.

The team at Pharmapac is not only passionate about packaging – we are committed to preserving the environment and the great outdoors so they can be enjoyed by everyone for generations to come.

  • 100% New Zealand owned and operated
  • FDA/EU compliant, AS/NZS ISO 9001:2015 accredited
  • Enviromark and Operation Clean Sweep certified
  • 100% recyclable packaging
  • Zero Net Waste Manufacturer 
  • Onsite post-industrial recycling facility
  • Socially sustainable manufacturer
  • State-of-the-art manufacturing plant saving on energy and water usage

Our bottles are recyclable

At Pharmapac we have chosen recyclable polymers over alternatives such as compostable or biodegradable plastic bottles. Based on the research we’ve done, and feedback from our clients and industry organisations recycling has been shown to be the most efficient way to make a difference today.

At present there are no suitable options for mainstream processing of compostable or biodegradable bottles, so when they are sent to landfill or are mixed in with recyclable bottles, they can actually cause more problems. While great in concept there is still a lot of confusion in this area as far as what will break down in home compost environments vs commercial composting facilities (NZ has limited commercial composting facilities) and the effect biodegradables have on landfill environments. 

For all of these reasons, we’ve chosen to promote recyclable packaging while we keep up with the research and keep an eye on advancements in this area.

We are working toward the development of other products and processes with increasing amounts of post-industrial recycled resins, post-consumer recycled resins and alternative polymers from sustainable sources like sugarcane, as part of our ongoing reduce, reuse, recycle commitment.

We have also designed in features to our packaging with end recyclability in mind. For example, our removable tamper evident band on our packaging allows separation of dissimilar resins during the recycling process.

Pharmapac packaging is made of the following recyclable plastics:

  • PET #1: this polymer is recycled into the following products – new packaging containers, strapping, carpet fibres, clothing, shoes (Adidas, etc) and textiles.
  • rPET #1: this polymer is recycled into the same products as PET #1 and the recycling options are the same as PET.
  • HDPE #2: this polymer is recycled into shampoo bottles, industrial products.
  • SugarCane HDPE #2: this polymer is recycled into the same products as HDPE and the recycling options is the same.
  • PP #5: this polymer is recycled into playground equipment, rubbish bins, bikes manufactured in NZ, outdoor furniture, automotive products, household tools/utensils, outdoor tools, and trays.


A Circular Economy

The world economic forum states “A circular economy is an industrial system that is restorative or regenerative by intention and design. It replaces the end-of-life concept with restoration, shifts towards the use of renewable energy, eliminates the use of toxic chemicals, which impair reuse and return to the biosphere, and aims for the elimination of waste through the superior design of materials, products, systems and business models”.


All packaging from Pharmapac is made from recyclable resins. We also offer PCR (post consumer recyclate) like rPET and create as little waste as possible in the manufacturing process.

PCR is when recycled plastics are collected to create recycled resins that can then go back into the reproduction of new plastic packaging. So that Pharmapac packaging that has completed its life cycle as a consumer item gets recycled in commercial and residential recycling programs to be used again.

We use another type of recycled content, called post-industrial. This is where we use our own production recyclate and recycle it back into our products where possible. We have invested in modernisation upgrades to equipment to increase our post manufacturing recyclate capabilities.

Zero Net Waste Manufacturing

At Pharmapac we are incredibly proud of our achievements in this area. Over the last 3 years we’ve been working hard to divert any manufacturing waste from landfill. We have invested in upgrading our own equipment to increase inhouse recyclate rates. We have also invested heavily in a MicroVu 3D laser measuring machine to strengthen our quality controls and reduce production waste. To top that off we have partnered with a variety of different 3rd party recycling companies to achieve this goal and we are incredibly proud to be in the 80-100% zone.  All plastics and offcuts are now recycled into fantastic new products.

The success of our waste reduction policies is testament to the commitment of all members of the Pharmapac team.

Energy and water management

Our production is based on responsible, efficient energy use and we have set up our plant with leading-edge infrastructure to manage our energy consumption. We regularly conduct internal plant energy assessments and have conducted an ECCA Energy Audit to review where we can make energy savings in our facilities. We carry out modernisation work to increase our energy efficiencies whenever possible, and operate with an energy efficient lighting plan throughout our plant/warehouse as well as movement sensors in the warehouse.

At Pharmapac we use a state-of-the-art closed loop water system to promote water usage efficiencies and eliminate water evaporation.

Sustainability and Our People

Social Sustainability is considered one of the three main pillars, alongside economic and environmental sustainability, also known as People, Planet and Profit. It is a process or framework that promotes wellbeing within an organisation’s own members.


As a family owned business, we place great value in our people. We consider our staff an extension of our whanau. Our average tenure of work is 10 years (which has come down with new staff coming onboard), a many number of employees reaching 25 years plus. We have created a working environment that celebrates a healthy work / life balance and an inclusion of all. Over the last 38 years we have put in place policies and procedures to make life easier within our organisation and created a workplace environment we too are happy to work in and be apart off.

What do the accreditations mean?

We are Enviro-Mark Diamond accredited

This demonstrates our commitment to sustainability and performance. It shows that we have a planned approach to managing our environmental impacts and preventing or reducing those impacts.

Enviro-Mark is an internationally recognised environmental management programme administered by Crown Research Institute which helps companies identify and reduce the environmental impacts resulting from the manufacture of their products. Through certification of best practice, it helps consumers play their part in reducing these impacts. To learn more about Enviro-Mark, visit:

We are a partner of Operation Clean Sweep®

Operation Clean Sweep® is an international program designed to prevent and help keep plastic litter materials out of the marine environment. Since 2015 Pharmapac has participated in the OCS Zero Pellet, Flake, and Powder Loss Program, committed to proper containment of the raw materials (plastic pellets, flakes and powder) in the products we use.  As part of our commitment to this program we have installed storm water traps over our storm-water drains, invested in an outdoor vacuum system which is part of our maintenance program and insisted our main transport partner become certified also.


We pride ourselves on our environmentally responsible approach to manufacturing and we strive to continually improve our processes and products in order to minimise our impact on the environment.

We are ISO 9001:2015 accredited

Our approach, based on the stringent requirements of ISO 9001:2015, uses a robust framework of processes and procedures including scheduled audits and compliance checks. For example, using a scheduled tooling and plant maintenance system (MA CMMS) we regularly monitor tooling wear and worn or defective machinery parts. This proactively eliminates any machine malfunctions which cause reject products and waste. We have recently invested significant capital in a MicroVu 3d measuring machine to improve quality management practices and reduce rejected product waste.

Our ongoing commitment to environmental stewardship is a key consideration in all operational decisions. It is also reflected in our production facilities and plant which we have designed to reduce water and electricity consumption and carbon emissions.

Working with-in Industry

Not only is Pharmapac a full member of Plastics New Zealand, but our Sustainability Manager also sits on the Plastics New Zealand Environment Committee. Plastics New Zealand is a great organisation that works to influence plastic manufacturing in New Zealand, so that manufacturers behave in an environmentally responsible manner. Over the last year the Plastics New Zealand Environment Committee has played a big role in facilitating new environmental guidelines and standards for PNZ members and associated industries. We also have relationships with other organisations and are often involved in working groups on environmental issues.

Environmental policy

Pharmapac recognises the importance of environmental protection and is committed to operating our business responsibly and in compliance with all legal requirements relating to design, manufacture and supply of plastic packaging products.

Contact us to get a copy of our full environmental policy.

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