ACE announces that the recycling rate for beverage cartons in the EU28 rose to 49% in 2018. This is a small (1%), but steady increase in the EU beverage carton recycling rate from the previous year.
“We are pleased to see that the beverage carton recycling rate continues to increase throughout the EU. The year-on-year increase underscores the efforts made towards recycling beverage cartons,” said Annick Carpentier, Director General of ACE. Some Member States reach rates above 70%, while there is still room for increased recycling participation in other Member States.
“This is not enough if the EU wants to reach a low carbon circular economy. We call for the ambitious implementation of EU waste legislation at national level to ensure all beverage cartons are collected and recycled. We believe that the recycling rate will continue to increase thanks to our industry’s commitment to support beverage cartons being recycled, including the non-fibre components,” said Ms. Carpentier.
In addition, ACE has launched a four-month campaign, “We’re not just square, we’re circular,” to raise awareness and build understanding that beverage cartons are recyclable and being recycled at scale in Europe. The campaign also aims to highlight the low carbon footprint of beverage cartons due to the renewability of materials used.
“Beverage cartons provide a double circularity, at sourcing thanks to the renewability of their main components and at end-of-life through recycling. This double circularity helps ensure that beverage cartons play a role in helping achieve a low carbon circular economy,” continued Ms. Carpentier.
ACE provides a European platform for beverage carton manufacturers and their paperboard suppliers to benchmark and profile cartons as renewable, recyclable and low carbon packaging solutions. Engaging with stakeholders and partners seeking high environmental stewardship, it contributes expertise to EU policy, legislation and standard‐setting. ACE members include beverage carton producers Tetra Pak, SIG Combibloc and Elopak; who develop, manufacture and market systems for the packaging and distribution of food, and produce packaging material at 20 plants in Europe. Most of the paperboard used by ACE members in beverage cartons in Europe is produced by Stora Enso in Skoghall (Sweden), Imatra (Finland), and BillerudKorsnäs in Gävle and Frövi (Sweden), who are also members of ACE.