Gail Tavill

Co-Founder & Past-President

Gail Tavill collaberated with industry peers to form AMERIPEN in 2010 to promote scientifically sound public policies related to packaging. She served as the organizations second President and for 9 years on the Board. Gail is also an advocate for reducing food waste, serving as co-chair of the Food Waste Reduction Alliance and 6 years on the Board of Forgotten Harvest in Detroit, our nations largest food rescue organization.  Gail recently left Conagra Brands where she spent more than a decade leading their sustainability agenda and several functions in R&D. She joined Conagra in 2000 after 10 years with Kraft and has had the pleasure to lead diverse R&D teams throughout her career. Gail earned a BS in Packaging from Michigan State and has been inducted to the MSU Packaging Alumni Hall of Fame. She also earned an MS in Environmental Management from the Sturat School of Business at IIT. 

Sus·tain·a·bil·i·ty 101

Monday, May 20th
1:00pm to 5:00pm

Sustainability…it’s a lengthy, six-syllable word that has only been around since the early 1970’s and can have many interpretations.  Since its introduction, the concept has gone from fringe to mainstream, yet the definition can still be “elusive” and “vague.” In this half-day course, experts from the industry will discuss what sustainability means for plastics, including exploring the principles of triple bottom line, goal setting, benchmarking, sustainability reporting, standards, alternative materials and emerging technologies that are helping us bridge the gap to reduce impacts on manufacturing and products throughout their life.  Whether you are new to the plastics industry, new to a sustainability role within your company, or a seasoned sustainability professional who’d like to brush up on leading sustainability trends, this course has something for everyone.

Presentations include: 

  • Introduction: Defining "sustainability" for the plastics industry - Kim Holmes, Plastics Industry Association
  • Trendy terms: Comparing and contrasting "sustainable materials management" and "circular economy" - Gail Tavill, representing AMERIPEN
  • The big picture of mechanical recycling: How it works and the status of curbside recycling in the U.S.. - Dylan de Thomas, The Recycling Partnership 
  • Beyond mechanical: Introducing chemical recycling and energy recovery technologies - Craig Cookson, American Chemistry Council
  • Alternate materials: An introduction to bioplastics - Patrick Krieger, Plastics Industry Association
  • Standards: From resin ID codes to circular economy to chain of custody for recycled content, there's a standard for nearly everything - Patrick Krieger, Plastics Industry Association
  • Summing it up: A look at the various tools for reporting sustainability progress and goals - Cristian Barcan, Vinyl Institute