This week (September 24 – 30 2018) marks the 15th Recycle Week, a celebration of recycling, organised by WRAP under the Recycle Now brand.
The aim of the week is to encourage the public to recycle more, by demonstrating the benefits of recycling items from all around the home.
Sustainability is now firmly on the agenda for consumers, brands and businesses. And, topping that agenda is plastic, with ever increasing awareness about the positive environmental impact of responsible recycling and the negative effect of single use.
A recent survey by technology consultants Thoughtworks, revealed that the number one issue for British food shoppers in the next decade will be to reduce packaging and to use more recyclable materials (62%). Already, shoppers name this as a bigger issue for the future than the price of food (57%).
Brands and retailers are no doubt taking the subject seriously with more than 60 businesses signing up to WRAP’s UK Plastic Pact, which among other milestones is aiming to make unnecessary single-use plastic packaging a thing of the past by 2025.
There is no doubt that everyone wants to do more to help the environment and there is a healthy interest in learning more, but it is clear that there is a need for more transparency on just what happens to all the items that we recycle.
A new report from waste management company Viridor reports that four out of five people want more clarity on what actually happens to their waste, with three out of five stating that it was important to know what happens to their waste.
The report goes on to reveal that 44 per cent think their council throws away most of their recycling, while 41 per cent think that even though they separate their recyclables from residual waste, it all goes to the same place.
As a business, we have had our own issues with recycling, with a waste management service stating that they couldn’t take any plastic as they quite literally had no-where to take it to. This is evidently a concern, as are all plastic recycling facilities now not able to cope with the influx of waste?
I think that the nation is fully behind the aim to eradicate single use plastic but there is definitely an interim role required providing transparency in what happens to our recycled waste and what steps brands and retailers are taking to support this aim.
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