Seaman Paper receives 'Innovation in Sustainability Award' by AF&PA as part of its 2023 Better Practices, Better Planet Sustainability Awards program; award recognizes Seaman's Vela bags, a paper alternative to replace single-use plastic poly bags

Sample article from our Pulp & Paper Industry

November 13, 2023 (press release) –

Seaman Paper, a leading global manufacturer of lightweight specialty paper and packaging solutions, has been honored with the “Innovation in Sustainability Award” by the American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) as part of its 2023 Better Practices, Better Planet Sustainability Awards program.

The award recognizes Seaman Paper’s innovative Vela™ bags, a paper alternative to replace single-use plastic poly bags. Vela™ bags are transparent paper transport bags that are FSC® certified, weather-resistant, durable enough to withstand supply chain demands, and certified recyclable.

Seaman Paper is currently partnering with hundreds of environmentally conscious brands – across 36 countries – in progressing their sustainability goals of reducing single-use plastics through their global supply chains.

“We are thrilled to receive this recognition from the AF&PA, it's a true testament to our deep-rooted history in innovation, our commitment to sustainability, and brings our motto ‘people, paper, packaging, for a sustainable world’ to life.” said Seaman Paper CEO, Ken Winterhalter. “Vela™ bags not only reduce plastic waste from entering landfills and our oceans, but they also support ocean research and conservation projects through our ‘Sea the Difference’ initiative.”

The Innovation in Sustainability Award is part of the AF&PA’s Better Practices, Better Planet program, which is one of the longest standing sustainability initiatives for a U.S. manufacturing industry. The program was established more than a decade ago and encompasses the entire value chain of paper and wood products manufacturing.

The 2023 Sustainability Award winners were selected by a judging panel with representatives from Clemson University, the Department of Energy, GreenBlue, the National Association of Manufacturers, Pure Strategies, and the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point.

“Our sustainability awards are outstanding examples of our goals in action,” said AF&PA President and CEO Heidi Brock. “We received our highest number of sustainability awards applications to date. We are so pleased to present these awards and deeply value the innovative work being done across our industry to advance safety, sustainability, and diversity, equity, and inclusion.”

For more information about Vela™, visit

Visit for videos of the award-winning projects.

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