April 27, 2021
Once again, the Australasian Recycling Label (ARL) has proved how important it is to have successful collaboration with industry stakeholders.
The program has just passed the 500th Member mark by welcoming a variety of new household brands including KFC, Swisse Wellness and lululemon.
Planet Ark introduced the ARL program to provide clear recycling advice for packaging back in 2015, but only five companies joined the program between then and 2018. It was not until we joined forces with the Australian Packaging covenant Organisation (APCO) that year when the program began to get real attention from the Australian packaging industry.
In just the past 12 months, 193 businesses have joined the ARL program, taking the total membership to 530. The packaging labelling system was also highlighted recently in the government’s 2021 National Plastics Plan as a key consumer recycling education tool that would help increase recycling rates and reduce recycling contamination.
“Congratulations and welcome to all of our new ARL Program Members,” Brooke Donnelly, CEO, APCO recently said.
“This month the Australasian Recycling Label (ARL) was a key focus of the Australian Government’s inaugural National Plastics Plan, with the innovative labelling program recognised as a key consumer recycling education tool. With the Australian Government committing to work with industry to apply the ARL on at least 80% of supermarket products by December 2023, there has never been a better time for Australian businesses to get involved.”
We know the first thing consumers look at when they want to know how to recycle packaging is the package itself. According to the newest Cleanaway Recycling Behaviours Report, 56% of Australians say they look for the ARL most or every time they are at the bin to see where an item should be recycled before disposing of it.
A labelling program needs to be supported by an education plan, which is why the Check It Before You Chuck It campaign has been encouraging Australians to look for the label every before disposing of their packaging. With more and more brands coming on board, make sure you are looking out for the ARL on your packaging for accurate recycling instructions.
After supervising the sustainability educational program at her corporate job in Mexico, Alejandra moved to Australia where she worked coordinating programs that improved consumer understanding of the environmental credentials of packaging and how to dispose of it. She currently manages the Australasian Recycling Label and the Business Recycling campaigns.