The FPA has given its support to the Packaging Industry Recycling Action Plan (PIRAP). PIRAP represents a clear programme of actions designed to enable the plastics packaging supply chain to work collectively towards a common goal of achieving UK Government targets for plastics recycling for both 2017 and beyond. The FPA was part of the WRAP and PLastics 2020 stakeholder group formed because of wider industry concerns that the mandatory 2017 recycling targets set for plastic packaging would not be met. The PIRAP document includes the principles agreed during the working and steering group meetings hosted by WRAP and can be downloaded here.

The scale of the 2017 challenge is clear :

  • The existing capture of plastics recycling, as reported, amounts to around 714,000 tonnes (2013 figures).
  • If the government adopts the revised Placed on the Market (POM) of 2,260k, this would give a national recycling rate of 32% in 2013.
  • With the revised POM figure, achieving the current business target of 57% in 2017 would mean that the UK would achieve a national recycling rate of 47%.
  • This would require capture to increase by an additional 350,000 tonnes.
  • Without the full engagement, therefore, of all stakeholders including National and Local Government, the Waste Management Sector, Recyclers, Compliance Schemes and Obligated Users, producers and convertors, these targets will prove extremely challenging to meet.

PIRAP signatories pledge to work with Plastics 2020 and WRAP developing and implementing specific sector actions to deliver the following outcomes:

  • The creation and promotion of both new and existing end-markets for use of recycled content.
  • An extension of the range of plastics collected from households and rigid packaging from C&I for recycling without undermining quality of existing streams.
  • Improved engagement by consumers in plastic recycling schemes.
  • Identification and implementation of the required improvements in sorting infrastructure that will ensure high quality output of plastics recyclate.
  • The establishment of an environment that encourages investment in modern facilities able to handle an increased range of materials and product types collected.
  • A business environment where end of life considerations are consistently factored in at the product design stage and that design for recyclability guidance is followed and implemented whenever possible.
  • To play our part in driving towards the UK’s plastics recycling targets for 2017 and beyond.
Plastics Industry Recycling Action Plan