Veolia UK _ Plan for plastics report standardise plastic packaging header

Step 2

Standardise plastic packaging

Increased plastic recycling by design

Sustainable and consistent design will ensure products can be recycled more easily.

Ensuring plastic bottles are recyclable while also keeping quality high and cost low is paramount.

Steps to ensure a product is recyclable by design:

Veolia UK _ Plan for plastics report standardise materials

Standardise materials

We need to standardise the polymers in films and pots, tubs and trays so the recycling industry can collect and recycle the material time and time again, without worries about obscure elements contaminating the process.

Most plastic bottles are made from polyethylene (HDPE) which are very easy to recycle.

Veolia UK _ Plan for plastics scrap hard to recycle material

Scrap hard to recycle materials

Similarly, hard to recycle material like black plastic should be solved or scrapped. There are too many material types designed without consideration for what happens after their purpose is served. Functional yet sustainable packaging will reduce contamination later in the recycling chain.

Veolia UK _ Plans for plastic reward recycling icon

Rewarding recycling

Policies should be considered which will reward packaging recyclability or penalise businesses which place unrecyclable products on the market.