Ecosurety boosts flexible plastic recycling in UK with FMCG and retail leaders
Five of the UK’s largest branded manufacturers have collaborated to form a £1 million fund to help make flexible plastic recycling economically viable for recyclers and easier for consumers.
The Flexible Plastic Fund is a UK industry first and is being led by Ecosurety with support from environmental charity, Hubbub. In collaboration with retailers, recyclers and manufacturers – including Mars UK, Mondelēz International, Nestlé, PepsiCo and Unilever – the Fund intends to improve flexible plastic recycling and reduce plastic pollution by giving the material a stable value.
This will in turn increase the supply of recycled plastic enabling industry to become more ‘circular’ and meet the forthcoming UK plastic packaging tax obligations. This will motivate investment in much needed jobs and infrastructure to make flexible plastic recycling a financially sustainable system in the UK.
New research from the University of Sheffield undertaken in January 2021 suggests there is strong consumer demand for recycling flexible plastic
Sainsbury’s and Waitrose have already signed up to support the initiative by hosting flexible plastic collection points in selected stores across the UK and several other major retailers are set to follow suit.
As a result, recycling this material will become increasingly accessible to consumers, as they will be able to recycle all types of flexible plastic packaging with participating retailers. New research from the University of Sheffield undertaken in January 2021 suggests there is strong consumer demand for recycling flexible plastic with 95% of participants saying they would be willing to recycle their flexible plastics.
With just 16% of UK local authorities currently offering household collection of flexible plastics, the amounts of this material collected for recycling are low. Flexible plastics include plastic bags, wrappers, films, pouches, packets and sachets and is described as ‘plastic bags and wrapping’, ‘soft plastics’ or ‘flexible plastics’. The Fund will guarantee a minimum value of £100 per tonne of recycled product to incentivise recyclers to process flexible plastic. The Flexible Plastic Fund is calling for recyclers, manufacturers and retailers to get in touch to play their role in this vital scheme that is driving solutions to flexible plastic waste in the UK.
The Flexible Plastic Fund is calling for recyclers, manufacturers and retailers to get in touch to play their role in this vital scheme that is driving solutions to flexible plastic waste in the UK.
For more information, visit Flexible Plastic Fund