We innovate to reduce the environmental impact of our packaging through better design.

More than a third of our products with packages large enough for the icon now include the How2Recycle label.

General Mills uses four key indicators to assess our progress in improving packaging environmental performance: 

  • Reducing the package-to-product ratio 
  • Increasing recycled content and recyclability
  • Increasing renewable and compostable content
  • Fitting more products onto each truck for transport

Collaborative innovation

Working in close collaboration with suppliers, in 2014 we eliminated about 900 metric tons of plastic cereal packaging on an annual basis through improvements in film toughness, producing a 10 percent thinner inner bag that still provides the needed product protection. 

By developing the carton and the shipping case as an integrated unit, we also reduced the weight of the box substantially while only slightly increasing the weight of the outer container. This reduced fiber packaging by more than 1,360 metric tons per year.

Recycled materials and recyclability

Recycled content represents approximately 45 percent of the weight of the packaging we use for our U.S. products, and approximately 85 percent of the packaging we use for those products is recyclable.

We continue working to increase our use of recycled and recyclable materials while maintaining product quality and safety.

We were one of the first companies to feature How2Recycle labels, beginning in 2013, to clearly communicate recycling instructions to the public.

Learn more


General Mills at a glance (PDF)

2015 Annual Report

Making food people love (PDF)

Global Responsibility

2015 report (PDF)