Alupro and Recresco Urge Residents to Recycle at Christmas

As sales of mince pies soar in the run up to Christmas, the Aluminium Packaging Recycling Organisation (Alupro) is urging consumers to recycle all their used foil and metal containers.

Eleven large recycling banks, recently installed throughout Broxtowe, Mansfield and Ashfield by recycling company Recresco in partnership with Alupro, mean residents in three local authorities in the East Midlands can now easily and conveniently recycle all used foil trays. Clean used foil sheet, metal food and drink cans can also be recycled. Introduced as part of a six month trial, the blue recycling banks will remain in place throughout the festive period and into the new year.

Ruth Meeke, programme manager at Alupro, said: “These new recycling banks offer a convenient way for residents to recycle the extra foil trays that are used over Christmas as well as metal packaging from other every day items such as drinks and food cans.”

Alupro estimates sales of metal drinks cans increase by at least 20% over Christmas, while more than 850 million foil trays for mince pies alone will be used over the festive period. This equates to around 680 tonnes of aluminium foil.

Ruth Meeke added: “Recycling one tonne of aluminium saves 9 tonnes of carbon equivalent gases. If all of the additional foil trays produced over the festive period are recycled, the saving in carbon equivalent gasses would be equal to taking 3,400 cars off the road for one year.*

“With the recycling banks now in place, there is a real opportunity for residents to recycle this valuable metal; it’s so easy to do, so why not make this Christmas a green Christmas?”

The six month trial will finish in February 2012 but if successful, the recycling banks will remain in place. Aluminium and other metal used in food packaging is an extremely valuable resource; it can be recycled indefinitely without any loss in quality and uses a fraction of the energy it takes to produce from raw materials.

Ruth Meeke added: “This trial offers residents the chance to make a real difference this Christmas and if successful, will see the recycling banks remain in place permanently.”

* Based on an average mileage of 12,500km/year and the average emissions of new cars according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) 2010 annual New Car CO

Alupro comments on the first year results for Courtauld 2

Alupro has welcomed the Courtauld Commitment first year progress report, published by WRAP, but says that alongside increasing resource efficiency, a determined drive to realise the value of waste and increase packaging recycling rates is required for Phase 2 of the Commitment to be fully successful in reducing the environmental impact.  It also calls on the Courtauld signatories to get behind industry-led recycling programmes, which are also having a positive impact on recycling performance.

It is encouraging to note the good progress made towards the Courtauld Commitment’s packaging target; the reduction of 5.1% (295,000 tonnes CO2 eq.) in greenhouse gas emissions associated with primary and single-use packaging in 2010 is welcome news.

However, although this means the agreement’s partners have achieved 51% of the overall target of the Phase 2 Commitment in the first year, this apparent success is undermined by a fall in the proportion of packaging recycled from 61.8% in 2009 to 60.7% in 2010.

This fall in the packaging recycling rate illustrates how important it is to continue communicating the value of waste. For those waste streams where we know the awareness of this value is increasing, we have seen corresponding increases in recycling rates.  For metal packaging, where end of life recycling rate is the acknowledged metric to measure environmental performance/improvement within Courtauld, this is particularly significant.

The recycling rate for aluminium packaging has increased steadily since 2008; In 2011, we have already seen a 30% increase in collection volumes up to the end of quarter 3 compared to the same period in 2010; this would suggest that we will see a significant increase in aluminium recycling performance for 2011.

Recycling programmes such as Every Can Counts, Aerofoil and MetalMatters have been developed, and are funded, by the metal packaging industry, along with some leading brand owners.  All have contributed to ensure this increase in recycling rates has matched record sales of metal packaging over the last two years, and Every Can Counts and MetalMatters will continue to expand and deliver in 2012.

Key to the on-going success of all these programmes is ensuring that they are representative of the metal packaging sector, and all represent an effective means through which a business can demonstrate extended Producer Responsibility. Alupro therefore calls on Courtauld signatories to engage with the industry’s programmes. By working in partnership across the packaging supply chain, we can increase the awareness of the value of waste and make significant increases to the recycling rate for all packaging materials.

Ultimately, the Courtauld Commitment is not simply about meeting targets, it’s about doing the right thing for your business, your customers and the environment

Every Can Counts launches ‘on the go’ recycling in Barnstaple

Drinks can recycling programme Every Can Counts has been launched to shoppers and retailers across Barnstaple town centre. Working with BID Barnstaple in partnership with Barnstaple Town Council, Every Can Counts is working toimprove drinks can recycling in the centre’s 400 retail units.  Barnstaple is the first retail centre in the South West to launch the programme.

Every Can Counts has been introduced as part of a focused green strategy, to demonstrate an environmental commitment, which includes diverting as much waste from landfill as possible.  The programme also fits with the BID civic pride initiative, which aims to encourage both traders and shoppers alike to take pride in their town centre.

Every Can Counts has previously partnered with North Devon Council, Ilfracombe Town Council and Woolacombe Parish council to encourage residents to recycle their drinks cans at Ilfracombe and Woolacombe beaches. Cans are being collected and processed by local community recycling enterprise, Community Resources,  a not-for-profit organisation based in Ilfracombe with a satellite unit in Barnstaple, which  provide meaningful, practical and worthwhile activities for adults with learning disabilities.

Expanding on this partnership, each of the 400 stores and restaurants within Barnstaple town centre have been provided with Every Can Counts recycling boxes and promotional materials to encourage both staff and shoppers to recycle their empty drink cans.

Rick Hindley of Every Can Counts comments: “More than nine billion drink cans are sold in the UK each year, and of these around 30% are consumed ‘on the go’. Through the partnership with BID, we will be engaging with two significant groups of ‘on the go’ consumers – those who work in businesses in the town centre and shoppers – so it offers us great opportunity to comprehensively promote drinks can recycling to a wide audience.  We have high hopes for this partnership, and hope to use our experience in Barnstaple to develop further projects with other town centres and retail sites in the future.”

Dane Stanley, Chairman of BID Barnstaple said: “We’re really excited to be the first shopping centre to launch the Every Can Counts programme in the South West.  We truly believe in environmental sustainability, and we are delighted to be able to engage with our shoppers and businesses and allow them to recycle their own cans. We hope other town centres will follow our example and introduce Every Can Counts.”

Although Barnstaple is the first retail site in the South West to introduce Every Can Counts, the programme is being actively promoted in workplaces and to ‘on the go’ consumers around the UK.  525 organisations now use the programme and there are more than 4200 Every Can Counts recycling points in offices, hospitals, universities and tourist sites all over the country.