Recycling Rate for Beverage Cartons in Europe Reached 40% in 2012

Beverage cartons are on average made of 75% paperboard, a renewable material when the forests are managed responsibly.

Nov. 2, 2013 - ACE — the Alliance for Beverage Cartons and the Environment — is pleased to note that recycling of beverage cartons reached 40% in the EU (European Union) in 2012. This represents an increase of 3% compared to 2011 data. The total recovery rate (recycling and energy recovery) reached 69% in the EU.

An increase in recycling rates was also recorded across Europe (EU-27, Norway and Switzerland) with 39% of beverage cartons being recycled and total recovery reaching 70% in 2012.

"After 20 years of tracking recycling rates in Europe, our industry is very happy with the progress made. In 1992 only 6,000 tonnes of post-consumer beverage cartons were recycled, in 2012 this number has increased to about 380,000 tons," said Katarina Molin, Director General of ACE.

"ACE members have been very much engaged across Europe to foster the recycling of beverage cartons. A lot has been already achieved, but more progress can be made in supporting the recycling of beverage cartons by ensuring an appropriate EU regulatory framework is in place" Molin said

"Recycling is definitely our favoured waste management option. Increasing beverage carton recycling across Europe is fully in line with the Commission's vision to move towards a recycling economy as laid down in the EU Roadmap for a Resource Efficient Europe," Molin added.

Beverage cartons are made on average from 75% paperboard, 21% polymers and 4% aluminium. The paper fibres from post-consumer beverage cartons are high quality and as such play a crucial role in ensuring that recycled paper maintains its properties and can be used to produce new packaging for consumer goods. Once recycled the polymer and aluminium is also in demand in a number of different applications ranging from composite products such as construction panels to industrial raw material.

SOURCE: Alliance for Beverage Cartons and the Environment