Consumers want 'at least' 50% recycled content in bottles

Consumers think that plastic bottles should contain recycled content, according to research by resource management company, Veolia.
21/09/2018 - 07:00
Consumers think that plastic bottles should contain recycled content, according to research by resource management company, Veolia.

In the survey results, published in their new ‘Plan for Plastics’ report, it was revealed that 93% think recycled content should be in plastic bottles and most are willing to pay an average of 2.5p more for it.

Richard Kirkman, chief technology and innovation officer at Veolia UK and Ireland said: “The British public have told us they expect plastic bottles to be made of recycled content.

“We see 50% recycled content for plastic bottles and 30% for plastic packaging as realistic ambitions for every manufacturer to aim for within the next 10 years.

When more packaging is both recyclable and made from recycled material, it will be the shift needed for recycled plastic to become mainstream.”

Currently, plastic bottles and packaging generally uses less than 15% recycled content.

In ‘Plan for Plastics’, Veolia outlines three ways the UK can turn plastic into an environmental success story.

  • Simplify recycling to remove confusion
  • Standardise packaging so a product is recyclable by design
  • Increase the use of recycled content in the manufacturing of new products.

The survey also revealed that 87% think that plastic bottles should be recycled in the UK, and while Veolia already recycle over 10,000 tonnes of plastic bottles in the UK every year, they are calling on manufacturers and the government to remove bottlenecks to greater the recycling rates.

Kirkman added: “Plastic packaging can be complex but increasing recycling rates can be simple. Veolia is in a unique position, holding a bird’s eye view over the end-to-end plastic recycling process, and in this report with industry experts RECOUP, we recommend three clear ways for the UK to become a champion of plastic recycling, both environmentally and economically, setting the standard for the next decade.

Veolia is planning to invest £1billion in recycling and recovery infrastructure in the UK over the next five years. It is up to designers, manufacturers and government to ensure supply matches our stake; so more plastic is collected and sorted to a higher quality standard. We owe it to future generations to make circular and sustainable living this county’s priority.” 

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