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Penn to debut sustainability focused tennis ball packaging

August 31 2023 - News Release News Editorial

Penn, the tennis ball brand sold by the HEAD USA racquet sports company, has improved the recyclability and biodegradability of its tennis ball cans.

Penn to debut sustainability focused tennis ball packaging

The plastic cans have been designed to be more efficiently recycled, with a shorter removable sleeve, using less ink that can be more easily separated by automatic waste separation technology. 

Should the new can still end up in landfills, rather than be recycled, the biodegrading process has been made a priority. Penn has injected organic additive produced by Midori Bio into its new PET cans and plastic lid caps. This means that should cans end up in a landfill, they will break down within three-to-five years. 

“Tennis balls are an integral component in the sport of tennis, and we have to be socially responsible, so it’s absolutely appropriate that we are making our ball cans and lids more recyclable and environmentally friendly,” said Jeff Ratkovich, Senior Business Manager for Penn Tennis. 

“Our first priority is to promote and encourage the tennis-playing community to recycle their discarded packaging, but we also understand that most of these materials are destined for landfills. So we’re cutting down the biodegrading time by partnering with Midori Bio and incorporating their pioneering organic additive in our new ball cans and plastic lid caps. It is the responsible thing to do.”

“Tennis balls are an integral component in the sport of tennis, and we have to be socially responsible." Jeff Ratkovich, Senior Business Manager for Penn Tennis

Penn ball cans are consumed as a food source by microbes in local landfill sites, with the added Midori Bio allowing the cans to expand with ground moisture, attracting microbes to the plastic, and breaking it down.

The new cans will soon replace Penn’s current cans on tennis courts across the US and Canada.

“For us, the performance of the product is paramount, and it goes without saying that the Penn balls themselves remain unchanged,” added Ratkovich. “It’s a case of: same great ball – better packaging. As a company, we are committed to improving our operational sustainability, and as part of this effort, we’re delighted to make it easy for tennis players to dispose of their Penn tennis ball cans with a clear conscience. For us, this is another important step towards greater sustainability.”

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