UK councils call for more recyclable food packaging
The UK’s Local Government Association (LGA) has called for industry to stop creating non-recyclable food packaging, saying that “Councils have done all they can,” to tackle the issue of plastic recycling. The LGA has found that only one-third of plastic packaging used by households can be recycled.
Commonly used plastic packaging types that are difficult to recycle include:
- Black plastic trays used in ready-meal packaging, since the machines that sort plastic for recycling cannot see black plastic
- Fruit and vegetable punnets, which can use three different types of polymers, and
- Margarine and ice-cream tubs made of polypropylene, which the LGA says is a difficult material to recycle.
It has also recently been reported that around half of UK packaging that has been reported as recycled is sent abroad for processing, and that it isn’t clear how much of it is actually recycled (read more here).
Europe is the world's second-smallest continent by surface area, covering just over 10 million square kilometres or 6.8% of the global land area, but it is the third-most populous continent after Asia and Africa, with a population of around 740 million people or about 11% of the world's population. Its climate is heavily affected by warm Atlantic currents that temper winters and summers on much of the continent. In the European Union, farmers represent only 4.7% of the working population, yet manage nearly half of its land area.