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Major supermarkets fund plastic packaging recycling improvements

Wednesday, June 27, 2018 - 17:15:55

Some of the leading food retailers in the UK, including Tesco and Sainsbury’s, have committed to a new scheme. This will hopefully result in the creation of a process which will allow packaging made from black plastic to be recycled effectively, according to Business Green.

The firms are working with recycling provider Viridor to pursue trials involving the latest recycling techniques which should be able to cope with materials which were previously less straightforward to handle.

The culprit, in this case, is simply the colour of the plastic, rather than any of its other physical properties. Because it is black, it is not easy for the equipment which sorts recyclable materials to detect it, meaning that most of it ends up in landfill sites, which is clearly not ideal.

Black plastic is routinely chosen to act as a tray container for various foodstuffs, but some manufacturers have decided to simply stop using it altogether and switch to a different colour plastic in order to pre-empt recycling complications.

Other companies have committed to eliminating all plastic from their packaging as quickly as possible, or to working to reduce the amount that is used in order to mitigate the environmental issues involved in its use.

Although in previous years it has been electronic waste that has received the most media attention when it comes to recycling, 2018 seems to be the year in which plastic packaging is taking the spotlight.

It is still important to remember that recycling old mobile phones and other gadgets is a vital step towards improved sustainability. Reducing the amount of waste that is sent to landfill is also essential, especially in the case of materials which are not biodegradable and will remain for hundreds or even thousands of years without breaking down.




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