NOW switches to postconsumer-recycled supplement bottles


The company performed extensive testing over two years to ensure the PCR bottles performed as well as or better than virgin-plastic bottles.

NOW’s virgin-plastic bottle next to its new PCR-plastic bottle. Photo from NOW.

NOW’s virgin-plastic bottle next to its new PCR-plastic bottle. Photo from NOW.

Supplements brand NOW announced that some of its dietary supplement bottles will now be made of 100%-postconsumer-recycled (PCR) resin. “Based on supplement bottle production in 2022, NOW estimates over 3 million pounds of plastic will be diverted for use in PCR bottles used by the company in the first year alone,” the firm’s press release states.

NOW says that the transition to PCR bottles “will be rolled out initially to every product in the extensive supplement line currently packaged in white bottles, with sports nutrition, pet supplements, and personal care lines to follow.” The company says customers may notice some variations in the color of the PCR bottles, which it says is normal for this material.

The company performed extensive testing for nearly two years before adopting the PCR bottles. “NOW performed quality testing and a sophisticated leaching study prior to making this change, taking nearly two years to make sure that bottle quality would not be inferior or cause any quality issues,” the press release says. The company performed oxygen permeability testing, water vapor permeability testing, leaching testing, and microbial testing. The company says the PCR bottles “performed as well as or better than virgin-resin PET bottles.”

“This has been a long learning process for us but an investment that we feel is very important as it supports our sustainability efforts,” said Kim Perkins, NOW’s vitamin brand manager, in the press release. “We reviewed multiple options in this process, from glass and aluminum to HDPE, because we wanted to maintain our quality standards while also reducing the impact on cost. PCR allows us to reuse recycled packaging materials and lighten our footprint on the earth. We have also joined the Association for Plastic Recyclers specifically to stay up to date on new recycling initiatives to continue to reduce our waste in the future.”

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