“Recycling rates and the quality of material for recycling are already very high in commercial and industrial collection, but unfortunately collection from households falls behind. With the rise of e-commerce and online grocery shopping the amount of packaging ending up in homes keeps on rising. In order to reach circular economy targets, it is vital that this valuable raw material gets separately collected and recycled so that the quality of fibre stays as good as possible,” says Anu Rehtijärvi, Market Intelligence Manager at Metsä Board and Workstream 3 consultative group member in 4evergreen.

4evergreen has set itself an ambitious target to increase the recycling rate of fibre-based packaging from the current high of 82%, to 90% in the EU by 2030. Key to achieving higher recycling rates is household separation of fibre-based packaging first from mixed waste and secondly from most other recyclables already at source.

“The guidelines will help to plan and develop proven sorting and collection schemes for fibre-based packaging, especially in countries and municipalities where high recycling rates are not yet established. The guidelines will therefore also target policymakers, municipal administration, as well the fibre-based packaging value chain including waste and EPR operators,” says Tytti Peltonen, VP Corporate Affairs European Union at Metsä Group and one of the co-leads in 4evergreen’s Workstream 5. “The idea is not to hamper already well-established schemes which are fit-for-purpose for local circumstances in achieving high recycling rates, but to complement the coverage of separate collection across Europe.”

Guidance on the Improved Collection and Sorting of Fibre-Based Packaging for Recycling

Metsä Board is one of the founding members of the 4evergreen industry alliance. 4evergreen brings together members from across the entire packaging value chain; from paper and board producers to packaging converters, food and drink brand-owners and retailers, technology and material suppliers, waste sorters & collectors, research organizations and technical universities. Read more about the targets of 4evergreen and follow it in LinkedIn and Twitter.

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