Aluminium recycling rate reaches 70 per cent

It has been announced by The Aluminium Packaging Recycling Organisation (Alupro) that seven out of ten cans sold last year were recycled.

Beverage cans such as beer and pop cans make up the largest sector of 180,000 tonnes of aluminium packaging found on the market.

Interestingly the UK is the largest beverage can market in Europe, with aluminium being the primary metal used for manufacturing.

Rick Hindley, Alupro executive director said:

We are obviously very pleased that aluminium packaging recycling rates continue to increase year on year and it’s particularly nice to reach a new 70% ‘milestone’ for beverage cans.

“The continued growth is due to the support of our members and partners in the wider industry and their commitment to invest in and support our programmes to drive positive, lasting behaviour change among consumers.”

It is the ambition of the European metal packaging sector to reach and exceed an average of 80 per cent metal packaging recycling by 2020.

Despite the optimism Alupro has expressed concern that such targets might be thwarted by lack of Government interest, and lobbied for targets for 2020 to be ‘front loaded.’

The organisation also argued for reform to the Packaging Recovery Notes (PRN) system, which included mandatory registration of reprocessors and exporters to ensure all material collected is reported.

The organisation was said to feel frustration when recycling pleas were ignored in 2017.

It states:

We remain convinced that future growth in aluminium recycling performance is achievable within the current system, subject to a few revisions which will ensure all recycling is accurately reported and that behaviour change programmes are properly funded on a fair and equitable basis.

“Alupro believes that communication is the missing link between the collection infrastructure and recycling growth, as has been proved over and again by industry-funded programmes like MetalMatters and Every Can Counts.

“Our focus remains to make people aware of the aluminium in the packaging they use every day and how to recycle it so that the metal can be given a new life, over and over again.”

It is thought that at least £36 million worth of aluminium is sent to landfills each year.

Andy has worked as a freelance journalist for a number of years and has been published in some of the UK’s top newspapers. He is now the editor Commercial Waste Magazine and contributes to a large selection of headlines and blog articles on the site.

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