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Recycling plastics: how to do it more effectively?

Published on
June 4, 2021

Do you ever stop and wonder how often you have collected another bin of plastic packaging? You think you're doing well because you've kept it separate for recycling. That's true, but unfortunately research shows that only 27% of those plastic packagings are recyclable at the moment. Surely we can do better than that?

Target: 50% recycling by 2025

The Dutch national government wants us to recycle 50% of plastics by 2025 and 55% by 2030. So there is still a lot to be done. Especially if you know that the recyclability of Dutch plastic packaging has barely improved over the past seven years.

Fortunately, 29% of this plastic waste is relatively easy to convert into a good recyclable variety. That would be a big improvement!

It’s in the details

So what needs to change? This lies mainly in the improvement of design details (design-for-recycling). Think about the right choice of labels, caps, glues.

An example: by changing the cap material to better match the rest of the bottle material, the whole bottle is easier to recycle.

Read more about our research about how recyclable plastics are and what is needed to meet the government targets.

Be involved in reducing plastic waste

Do you want to do more than just buy and use less plastic? And more than separating your waste properly? Then consider a study in which you work on possible solutions.

For example, work on alternatives to current plastics or develop methods to improve recycling. Programmes that can help you with this: