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Europe recycles 50%-plus of aluminium closures

Europe – The European recycling rate for aluminium closures has increased to more than 50%, according to the European Aluminium Foil Association (EAFA). The figure is the result of ‘€˜improved’€™ national initiatives as well as the development of collection and recycling schemes across the continent, it is stated.

Of the 36 billion spirits bottles produced every year, 25 billion have aluminium closures – and the same applies to the vast majority of quality olive oil and premium water bottles.

Currently, a minimum of four out of 10 aluminium closures consumed in Europe are recycled either separately or together with glass packaging.

‘Thanks to modern processes, the aluminium is easily extracted and recycled, from both material streams,’ notes the association. National recycling initiatives are ‘proving to be most effective’, it adds.

For example, the UK’s ‘You Can Leave Your Cap On’ scheme has enabled local authorities to increase the recovery of aluminium closures. Initiated by the Aluminium Packaging Recycling Organisation (ALUPRO) in partnership with British Glass and EAFA, this promotes the practice of screwing closures back on to empty bottles before recycling so that more aluminium can be recovered.

‘It is encouraging to see the industry continues to support national initiatives which enhance the collection and recycling of aluminium closures,’ comments EAFA’s closures group chair Franco Bove. ‘Recycled aluminium is a valuable commodity, so supports the economics of the recycling process.’

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