Mid America Joins CELAB Initiative to Increase Release Liner Recycling and Advance the Circular Economy

Mid America Paper Recycling (MAPR) today announced its participation as an official recycling partner in CELAB (Circular Economy for Labels), a first of its kind sustainability program to increase recycling of spent release liner used in the North American self-adhesive label and package printing industry.  

One of the largest independent brokers, processors and exporters of recovered paper in the Central United States, Chicago-based MAPR will collaborate with CELAB on building a Midwest pilot program for label converters and their customers. It will include education efforts, resource links and free waste audit services so they can begin recycling their matrix and release liner, creating a sustainable circular economy around labels.

“We are very proud to partner with CELAB to help converters everywhere strengthen the recycling and circularity of spent release liners,” said Paul Pirkle, president of Mid America Paper Recycling. “We have recycling best practices to share and all the tools in place to help converters capture this material.”

Once a label is removed, the film-based silicone release liner plays no further role in the packaging process and is typically discarded into the trash. Choosing and supporting release liner recycling can decrease a converter’s monthly waste-hauling costs while helping to divert material from landfills. 

CELAB’s two-year-old consortium represents global and regional companies throughout the self-adhesive label supply chain. Its leadership team studied the entire value chain for film based silicone release liners, the use of which is growing worldwide. 

“We were founded to create a sustainable labeling industry,” adds Brian Lawrence, CELAB Executive Board Member and Director of Business Development for Henkel Adhesive Technologies. “Increasing access to liner recycling through experienced partners like Mid America helps create greater circularity for all our North American members.”

CELAB will also be promoting its recycling initiative as an exhibitor at this year’s TLMI Annual Meeting October 17-19 in Naples, Florida, with Mr. Lawrence appearing as a panelist during TLMI’s Sustainability Panel Discussion on October 19th at 10:15-11:15 AM.  

For converters interested in taking the first step toward exploring options for their matrix and release liner recycling, Mid America offers a free Waste Audit Survey, which takes only 10 minutes to complete online.

Mid America Paper Recycling and CELAB have teamed up to help MIdwest label converters increase their recycling of spent release liner.


Founded in 1926, Mid America Paper Recycling is a fourth-generation leader in the recycling industry and provides solutions for partners ranging from small businesses to large multinational corporations. Its robust program features a new benchmarking audit, consultation services, documentation, quantification and presentation of the specific and overall values that can be realized from customer waste streams. To learn more about the free waste audit and Mid America’s other environmental initiatives, call 773-890-5454 or visit www.midamericapaper.com.


CELAB: Toward a Circular Economy for Labels is an industry initiative, founded by companies in the self-adhesive label industry to create greater circularity for its products by enhancing and promoting matrix and release liner recycling around the world. Comprising many of the self-adhesive label industry’s largest companies, CELAB will operate as a coalition, empowered to reach across the entire value chain to promote a circular economy for self-adhesive label materials. CELAB is designed to facilitate collaboration at a global level and encourage the universal adoption of best practices while fostering regionally appropriate initiatives and cooperation.