Alupro Extends OPRL’s Materials Reach

Alupro is joining OPRL’s guarantors to add aluminium packaging recycling to the partnership of paper and card, cartons and plastic packaging recycling organisations alongside local authority and brand and retailer recycling interests.  The on-pack recycling labelling run by OPRL Ltd, the rapidly growing not-for-profit, embraces all packaging materials in a unified scheme understood and acted on by more than 3 in 4 consumers.


Alupro joins ACE UK, CPI, INCPEN, LARAC and RECOUP as guarantors of OPRL Ltd.  The shared ambition of all the organisations is to achieve greater and more effective recycling of packaging materials to establish a truly circular economy.


Rick Hindley, Executive Director of Alupro, said “We are delighted to become a guarantor to OPRL; our members recognise the huge importance of clear messaging to consumers to encourage recycling, and on-pack recycling labelling is a vitally important element of the communication toolkit. We look forward to working with OPRL and its partners to further develop a clear and unambiguous labelling system.


Jane Bevis, Chair of OPRL Ltd, added “Our strength lies in the broad coalition of organisations supporting our labelling scheme and recyclability evaluation and design activities.  The public and participating businesses know that the same evaluation framework and rigour is applied to all packaging, and the same simple and easily recognisable recycling information given to consumers.  That’s why, in just 10 years, our labels are so widely recognised and trusted.”


“We share with all our guarantors a commitment to support the growth of a circular economy in packaging and packaging materials. This closer relationship with Alupro broadens the range of materials covered, enabling us to draw on their expertise and insight into aluminium packaging-related issues.  We continue to develop the right tools to support members in responding to the evolving policy agenda, delivering more recyclable packaging ranges and engaging consumers more effectively in recycling that packaging.”



Notes to Editors


1)   OPRL Ltd operates the UK-wide On-Pack Recycling Label scheme used by over 400 member companies and charities. Alupro joins ACE UK, CPI, LARAC and RECOUP as guarantors, giving a broad base of support.  OPRL is an independent not-for-profit company limited by guarantee. Established to help retailers and brands engage their customers in recycling packaging, OPRL Ltd opened membership to the wider packaging supply chain in 2017, and to compliance schemes and sustainability consultancies in 2018 and 2019.

2)   The Aluminium Packaging Recycling Organisation (Alupro) represent the leading aluminium packaging producers, reprocessors, converters, fillers and brand owners in the UK on issues relating to the recycling of aluminium packaging.  Alupro manages several programmes which are making a vital contribution towards encouraging consumers to recycle more: MetalMatters has been managed by Alupro since 2012 and focuses on improving metal capture rates in local authority recycling schemes, and Every Can Counts, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year, engages people to recycle drinks cans used outside the home.  Alupro is celebrating 30 years of shining the spotlight on aluminium this year.  Further information is available via

3)   The OPRL label, which is currently under review, has three categories which tell consumers how likely it is that their local authority will accept specific packaging materials for recycling.

·        Widely recycled (75% or more of UK local authorities collect that type of packaging).

·        Check local recycling (between 20% and 75% of UK local authorities collect that type of packaging).

·        Not currently recycled (fewer than 20% of UK local authorities collect that type of packaging).

4)   OPRL’s consumer recognition and response figures are taken from online and face to face surveys of UK residents in November and December 2018, that showed at least 3 in 4 consumers recognise, understand and act on the label.

5)   OPRL has developed a range of tools to support members in designing and producing recyclable packaging, engaging consumers in recycling it effectively, and local authorities in collecting it. Our ambition is to support every stage in the packaging materials cycle to help realise a truly circular economy.

6)   OPRL is once again sponsoring the Design Team of the Year Award at the 2019 UK Packaging Awards, ensuring sustainability and consumer engagement in recycling are at the heart of the criteria.

Media Contact: Jane Bevis, OPRL on 07585 047457

Pumpkin Rescue


Halloween is the spookiest time of the year, but what happens after we’ve carved pumpkins to decorate our homes is probably the scariest thing of all.

Around 15 million pumpkins are wasted in the UK every Halloween. Yet pumpkin flesh is edible and could be used in delicious recipes that not only prevent the waste but also delight our taste buds.

#PumpkinRescue is Hubbub’s initiative to tackle the pumpkin waste and reduce that scarily high figure of 15 million binned pumpkins.  One of our team members got into the spirit by carving a recycle-themed pumpkin.  This looks pretty good, but even better is that every bit of pumpkin was put to good use, creating delicious dishes such as roasted pumpkin with ginger and chilli flakes, and smoked paprika roasted seeds. And the parts that can’t be eaten went into home compost or food waste collection.

For the fifth year, Pumpkin Rescue is happening in locations across the UK and the spooky activities include carving, cooking workshops and tasting events. You can find out more here

Halloween doesn’t last long, so make sure it leaves only good memories.  Find more sustainable ways to reuse, recycle and create Halloween props at

Record Q3 aluminium packaging recycling performance

The latest recycling data, released by the Environment Agency today, reports the strongest ever quarter for aluminium packaging.


According to the data, just under 30,000 tonnes of aluminium packaging was recycled in quarter 3, and year to date, recycling is up by 6% (81,286 v 76,582 tonnes) when compared to the same period last year.   Most importantly, it is well on course to achieve this year’s target (108,919 tonnes) with likely additional volumes available to be carried forward into 2020.

Rick Hindley, Executive Director, of the Aluminium Packaging Recycling Organisation (Alupro) commented:

‘We are optimistic, following a disappointing Q2, that this year’s target will be met and anticipate that there should be more than enough evidence to allow producers to meet their obligations.   As a result, we expect the unjustifiably high Packaging Recovery Note (PRN) price will start to fall to more realistic levels.   Historically, aluminium PRN prices have been below £30 per tonne, yet currently aluminium PRN’s are trading, on the spot market, at around £450 per tonne.’

While aluminium is now in a positive position, we continue to urge the Government to make short-term changes to the PRN system, pending the reform of producer responsibility system, to ensure that PRN prices stabilise at a realistic level and to ensure that monies raised through the system are invested to boost recycling levels as intended.

Aluminium beverage can recycling in Europe hits record 74.5% in 2017

31 billion cans recycled, or 420,000 tons of aluminium

The overall recycling rate for aluminium beverage cans in the European Union, Switzerland, Norway and Iceland in 2017 rose 2.3% from 2016 (72.8%), to reach an all-time record 74.5% in 2017. Almost 31 billion cans were recycled in the EU and EFTA countries in 2017, representing a total of more than 420,000 tons of aluminium and underscoring its contribution to the European circular economy.

All aluminium cans are equally recyclable, no matter the colour, design, format or size. Recycling aluminium consumes 95% less energy than producing it from raw material, while the recycling process generates only 5% of the greenhouse gas emissions produced from raw material production. Can recycling therefore saves the annual equivalent of  approximately 3 million tons of GHG emissions – or the annual emissions of a mid-sized European town like Belfast, Malmö or Thessaloniki 1.

Can manufacturers (members of Metal Packaging Europe) and their aluminium suppliers are confident that the European can recycling rate will increase further in the coming decade, primarily through a combination of measures such as improved PMD collection systems (‘yellow’ or ‘blue’ bags and bins) and incentive based initiatives such as modern deposit return and voluntary take back (‘cash for cans’) schemes.

Can manufacturers and aluminium recyclers are ready to invest in additional recycling capacities, providing other stakeholders, such as public and private waste management operators, are equally prepared to invest in additional and modern sorting facilities.

Leonie Knox-Peebles, CEO of Metal Packaging Europe, stated: “We believe that the new European calculation method will hardly impact the final recycling rates being achieved for aluminium beverage cans.”

Maarten Labberton, Director Packaging Group at European Aluminium, added: “As we move towards our 100% recycling rate target, what matters most is the recycling yields; aluminium is well positioned for the future given its very low losses during recycling.”

The annex provides a detailed overview of aluminium beverage can recycling rates by country in 2017.
Recycling rates have been calculated on the basis of the present EU reporting rules.

1 If a yearly GHG emission of 9.2 tonnes is assumed per EU citizen as used in the Product environmental footprint methodology,
see Normalisation method and data for Environmental Footprints – Deliverable 2 of the AA Environmental Footprint and Material
Efficiency Support for Product Policy (No. 70307/2012/ENV.C.1/635340)


For further information:
– European Aluminium:
o Website:
o Maarten Labberton, Director Packaging Group –
– Metal Packaging Europe:
o Website:
o Phone: +32.2.897.04.93
o Email: