Comprehensive Procurement Guidelines for Paper and Paper Products

Comprehensive Procurement Guidelines for Paper and Paper Products

? Most of these items can be made from a diversity of printing and writing papers, depending on the spectacle characteristics of the item. Some of the papers are a commodity-type and some are specialty papers. EPA recommends that procuring agencies determine the spectacle characteristics required of the paper prior to establishing minimum content standards. Bond, ledger or stationery made from cotton fiber paper or a text & cover paper, for example, have different characteristics than similar items made from commodity papers.

Recommended Recovered Fiber Content Levels for Glazed Printing and Writing Papers

Covered Printing Paper

Recommended Recovered Fiber Content Levels for Bristols

Total Recovered Fiber (%)

File Folders (manila and colored)

Dyed Filing Products

Cards (index, postal, and other, including index sheets)

Pressboard Report Covers and Binders

Tags and Tickets

Vendors, Researchers and Related Organizations

To locate vendors, researchers and other organizations about recycled content below, use the tabs below. Click on your matching area of interest for a collection of related links.

The following links exit the site Exit

The Report on the Availability of Printing and Writing Papers Listed in the CPG Paper RMAN fulfills the requirement in the implementing instructions of Executive Order 13423, March 29, 2007, for EPA to report to the Federal Environmental Executive on the availability of printing and writing paper with recycled content. This report can serve as a good resources to those looking to buy recycled-content paper.


Newsprint is a type of groundwood paper generally used to print newspapers. Recovered-content newsprint is usually manufactured from fiber recovered from old newspapers and magazines. The federal government uses newsprint for printing the Federal Register, Congressional Record, and other publications.

EPA’s Recovered Materials Advisory Notice (RMAN) recommends that procuring agencies establish minimum content standards voiced as a percentage of recovered fiber, including a percentage of postconsumer fiber. For most grades, EPA recommends postconsumer fiber content. Postconsumer fiber does not include newsstand comebacks or printer’s overruns.

Recommended Recovered Fiber Content Levels for Newsprint

Commercial/Industrial Sanitary Tissue

Sanitary tissue products include bathroom and facial tissue, paper towels, napkins and general-purpose industrial wipers. They are generally sold in rolls or sheets and are used in individual care, food service and cleaning applications. The grades of sanitary tissue products covered in the CPG are manufactured for use by restaurants, hotels, schools, government agencies and other similar commercial and institutional buyers. Some recycled-content sanitary tissue products are softer, stronger and more absorbent than others.

Recommended Recovered Fiber Content Levels for Commercial/Industrial Sanitary Tissue Products

Paperboard and Packaging

The paperboard and packaging category covers two major types of board: “containerboard” used to make corrugated shipping containers, and “paperboard” used in a broad multitude of packaging applications such as folding cartons, blister cards, beverage carriers, book and report covers, mailing tubes, movie cassette boxes and others.

Containerboard (corrugated board) is actually a composite paperboard made by sandwiching fluted “corrugating medium” in inbetween layers of linerboard. Linerboard, made primarily from both cherry and recovered fiber from old corrugated containers (OCC), is used to make the inward and outer walls of a box. The inwards, fluted medium layer in the middle is made from postconsumer recovered fiber from OCC, old newspapers (ONP), used office paper and mixed papers or cherry fiber.

Paperboard containing recovered fiber is a multi-ply material, formed in layers of recovered fiber. Often grey in appearance, a white top layer made from recovered office paper is often used to provide a clean printing surface. Paperboard mills use more recovered fiber than any other segment of the paper industry to manufacture a broad multitude of product packaging (folding cartons), beverage carriers, mailing tubes, industrial paperboard (cores, drums, tubes, and cans), and many other items. Kraft padded mailers, Kraft bags, and wrapping paper made from OCC also fall under the packaging category.

Key Resource

Recommended Recovered Fiber Content Levels for Paperboard and Packaging Products

1 The recovered fiber and postconsumer fiber content is calculated from the content of each component relative to the weight each contributes to the total weight of the box.
Two The recommended content ranges are not applicable to all types of paperboard used in folding cartons. Cartons made from solid bleached sulfate or solid unbleached sulfate contain no or puny percentages of postconsumer fiber, depending on the paperboard source.
Three Carrierboard made from unbleached kraft contains up to 25 percent recovered fiber, while carrierboard made from recycled paperboard contains up to 100 percent recovered fiber.

Miscellaneous Paper Products

Tray liners presently are the only product in the Miscellaneous Paper category. Sometimes referred to as “doilies” or “place mats,” tray liners are specialty paper items designed to line food service trays in institutional and commercial restaurants and cafeterias in schools, hospitals, prisons and private facilities.

Recommended Recovered Fiber Content Levels for Miscellaneous Paper Products

Related video: 2015 Six-Word Story Contest Winners

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *