EU beverage carton recycling up in 1997

One-fifth of EU laminate cartons now recycled, wide geographical variations remain

Recycling of used drinks cartons in the EU is increasing steadily, Brussels-based trade association the Alliance for Beverage Cartons and the Environment (ACE) said today. Releasing its second annual recycling statistics, covering 1997, the organisation said that of the 822,924 tonnes of beverage cartons on the EU market in 1997, 20% were recycled - a three percentage point increase on the previous year. ACE's Director General, Lyn Trytsman-Gray told ENDS Daily that the increase was due to steady improvements in countries that have established recycling systems, which require special technology to separate plastic coatings and paper fibre cores. However, recycling in some EU countries has yet to get off the ground. No cartons were recycled in the UK in 1997, while the rate in France, the Netherlands and Italy was only 2-3%. Germany achieved 69% recycling, while Austria, Belgium and Sweden each achieved around 30%. In some countries like Denmark, France and the Netherlands, household waste is usually sent to incinerators accounting for their low recycling rates, Ms Trytsman-Gray said.

Follow Up:
ACE, tel: +32 2 219 0643.

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