Recycling standards to be examined by WRAP

Standards and specifications for recycled materials are the latest issues to come under review by the Government-created Waste and Resources Action Plan, which says the quality of current standards “ranges considerably”.

WRAP’s Business Plan Working Paper 7 intends to create a range of standards for recycled materials and compost which it is hoped will “increase confidence in recycled products”. Simultaneously it wants to work with industry and bodies such as the British Standards Institution to encourage companies to use recycled materials in products.

The recycling industry is being asked to respond to the paper, although a short deadline of Monday February 19 has been imposed. WRAP’s plan is to create two product standards programmes by 2003, one of which would be for compost.

Wood and plastics are two materials highlighted in the plan as needing more work to establish standards. And it says applications for glass in construction, treatment filtration and coatings should also be investigated.

The report acknowledges there are barriers at present to increased use of recycled material. These include a lack of publicised and co-ordinated standards, a lack of awareness of the uses of recyclate and caution from industry about changing from virgin materials.

Comments on the commercial instruments consultation document are invited by February 19 and should be sent to Ray Georgeson, policy director, WRAP, 8th Floor, 43 Marsham Street, London SW1P 3PY, tel: 020 7944 8861, fax: 020 7944 8864, email: WRAP policy

Further details are also available at the WRAP website.

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