Alupro announces a new milestone reached for aluminium drink can recycling in the UK as recycling rate reaches 70%

Seven out of ten aluminium drink cans sold in the UK in 2016 were recycled, according to the Aluminium Packaging Recycling Organisation.

Beverage cans make up by far the largest sector of the 180,000 tonnes of aluminium packaging placed on the market during the year; and with the UK being the largest beverage can market in Europe, and aluminium the dominant metal used for can manufacturing, the 70% milestone for aluminium cans makes a major contribution to the European metal packaging sector’s ambition to reach and exceed an average 80% metal packaging recycling rate by 20201.

Commenting on the recycling rate milestone Alupro Executive Director Rick Hindley said: “We are obviously very pleased that aluminium packaging recycling rates continue to increase year on year and it’s particularly nice to reach a new 70% ‘milestone’ for beverage cans. The continued growth is due to the support of our members and partners in the wider industry and their commitment to invest in and support our programmes to drive positive, lasting behaviour change among consumers.”’

Alupro has expressed concern that future recycling performance will be compromised by a lack of ambition from government in setting new targets for aluminium, and lobbied for targets to 2020 to be ‘front loaded’. The organisation has also argued for reform to the PRN system, including the mandatory registration of reprocessors and exporters to ensure that all material collected for recycling is reported through the issuing of Packaging Recovery Notes.  This was the result of research it carried out to reveal the ‘real recycling rate’ for aluminium packaging. The organisation expressed frustration when its argument for an increase in the 2017 target was ignored.

“We remain convinced that future growth in aluminium recycling performance is achievable within the current system, subject to a few revisions which will ensure all recycling is accurately reported and that behaviour change programmes are properly funded on a fair and equitable basis. Alupro believes that communication is the missing link between the collection infrastructure and recycling growth, as has been proved over and again by industry-funded programmes like MetalMatters and Every Can Counts. Our focus remains to make people aware of the aluminium in the packaging they use every day and how to recycle it so that the metal can be given a new life, over and over again.”

Notes to editors:

The recycling rate for aluminium can beverage cans is calculated by Alupro using data supplied by the national packaging waste database, and by its member companies, and using methodology consistent with that used across Europe to calculate recycling rates.


South Northamptonshire residents urged to make their used metal matter

Households across South Northamptonshire are being urged to recycle more of the 45 million items of metal packaging used in the region each year.

South Northamptonshire Council (SNC) has teamed up with Aluminium Packaging Recycling Organisation (Alupro), an organisation representing the metal packaging manufacturing industry, recyclers and fillers, to launch the ‘MetalMatters’ recycling campaign across the district next month.

The campaign aims to raise awareness of the importance of metal packaging recycling, to increase the amount collected from households and reduce the costs for dealing with household waste.

Cllr Dermot Bambridge, SNC’s portfolio holder for environmental services said: “Over a year, the average household uses approximately 600 food tins, 380 drink cans, 27 aerosols and 182 foil trays.

“Every metal can that is recycled saves enough energy to power a television for four hours.

“By recycling all the metal packaging used in South Northamptonshire each year would save around 1,220 tonnes of carbon dioxide, the equivalent to taking over 260 cars off local streets for a year and helping the environment.”

Rick Hindley, executive director of Alupro the project managers, said: “The MetalMatters programme has delivered significant increases in the volumes of metal packaging collected for recycling in other parts of the UK, so we’re aiming to repeat – and hopefully better this – in South Northants.”

The campaign includes leaflets which will be sent to each of the 38,000 households in the area detailing the importance of including used metal packaging in their blue recycling bin and a series roadshows across the district.

Residents are reminded that aerosol cans, drink and food cans, aluminium trays and wrapping foil, can all be recycled via their blue wheelie bin.

An interactive A to Z of what goes where can be found here –

The MetalMatters campaign is jointly funded by an industry partnership comprising the UK’s leading producers, users and recyclers of metal packaging and South Northamptonshire Council.

For more information visit –, or for more information on waste and recycling in South Northants visit –

MetalMatters roadshows will be visiting South Northamptonshire throughout May and June:
• Tuesday, 23 May, Tesco Superstore, Oxford Road, Brackley – 10am to 4pm
• Thursday, 25 May, Waitrose, Richmond Road, Towcester – 10am to 4pm


Every Can Counts at the Tour Series and OVO Energy Women’s Tour

Fans attending the OVO Energy Women’s Tour this June will have the chance to make Every Can Count as the five-day UCI Women’s World Tour race partners with Alupro, the Aluminium Packaging Recycling Organisation. Read more

The Recycle Race with Every Can Counts and Drops Cycling

Alupro programme Every Can Counts and Drops Cycling Team are teaming up at major UK cycling races during the 2017 season to engage with the public about the importance of recycling drink cans. Read more