Find out more about the Smart Sustainable plastic Packaging (SSPP) Challenge, a £60 million fund to support academic-led research to address known problems and to support industry-led collaborative research and development of new technologies, matched by £149 million from industry.

The challenge aims to:

  • tackle the environmental impact of plastic packaging through the development of a more sustainable plastic packaging supply chain in the UK
  • drive research and innovation to develop more sustainable plastic packaging materials and designs, and enable new recycling processes and infrastructure
  • encourage collaboration and innovation in integrated circular supply chains using insights into consumer behaviour to reduce the environmental impacts of plastic packaging.


The fund runs until 2025,  which will develop a new generation of advanced and sustainable plastic packaging to reduce single-use plastics, increase recyclability and the amount of plastic packaging that is recycled and ultimately reduce the amount of plastic waste entering the environment.


With over £30 million funding already awarded to date, the Smart Sustainable Plastic Packaging Challenge programme is supporting projects to drive major changes around plastic packaging reduction, re-use and recycling. From major infrastructure demonstrator projects to increase the UK’s recycling capacity through to collaborative research between academia and industry on specific barriers to behaviour change, the programme represents the largest ever UK government investment in sustainable plastics research and innovation. Read more about the Challenge and the funded projects in the SSPP 2021 Review.


Challenge Director Dr Paul Davidson outlines some of the drivers and barriers to developing a more sustainable packaging supply chain in his latest blog and you can watch our interview with Paul below on the work of the SSPP below:


Dr. Paul Davidson also wrote a blog on Making Plastic Packaging Sustainable, which provides an overview of the role of the SSPP team. Read this here.


SSPP will have its own dedicated conference at Global Research & Innovation in Plastics Sustainability (GRIPS) 2022, taking place 15th – 17th March, which you can find out more about here.


Find out more here

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