August 24, 2020
A report released by the Australian Council of Recycling (ACOR) yesterday highlights the need for clear, concise and evidence-based recycling labelling for packaging in Australia. The Australasian Recycling Label is that label.
The ACOR report's findings were developed using a random audit of products and found that 88% of all packaging components are recyclable with 23% of products displaying the Australasian Recycling Label. After less than two years since launching, this is an exciting and important result.
“The uptake has been significantly faster than comparable international labels, and the ARL has been recognised by international bodies like the United Nations Environment Program as best practice when it comes to informing consumers how to best dispose of their packaging,” said Planet Ark CEO Paul Klymenko.
The Australasian Recycling Label is the only evidence-based recycling label providing Australians with easily understood recycling information where it’s needed most: at the bin. It removes confusion, saves you time and reduces waste going to landfill.
Research commissioned by Planet Ark found that 73% of Australians want to see the ARL on all packaging, while 72% claim it would make them more likely to recycle.
The system is underpinned by the Packaging Recyclability Evaluation Portal (PREP), which assesses not only the materials used to manufacture a piece of packaging, but also its shape, weight, size, inks and many other variables. PREP simulates the behaviour of packaging in the recycling ecosystem, from the moment it is collected to when it is sorted at Materials Recovery Facilities and in subsequent processing facilities.
With ACOR finding that 88% of all packaging components are recyclable but many recycling related labels unclear or not backed by evidence, there is clearly more work to be done. We look forward to working with the Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation to encourage further uptake of the label as brands look to provide accurate packaging recycling information to consumers.
For more information on the Australasian Recycling Label and why we need it, visit arl.org.au.
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.