Ministers commit to eliminating all packaging going to landfill

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In a landmark Meeting of the Environment Ministers (MEM), the Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation (APCO) has been endorsed to lead the government’s response to the China Ban issue, setting a target to achieve 100 per cent recyclable, reusable or compostable packaging in Australia by 2025.

APCO is recognised as one of Australia’s leading product stewardship organisations with a strong national and global collaborative network. Its established frameworks, resource capabilities and proven independence underpins its capacity to facilitate a whole of life cycle response to China’s waste import restrictions.

Brooke Donnelly, APCO CEO commented: “The China issue presents a significant opportunity for Australia to shift to the next level in packaging resource recovery, recycling and end use. Today’s announcement is a monumental call to action and one of the most ambitious and decisive environmental targets to be supported in Australia. We applaud the Federal, State and Territory Governments for stepping up as key players in the global movement to create sustainable packaging solutions that drive accountability, transparency and shared value for consumers, industry and government.

“We will support more innovative packaging design, enhance consumer education, as well as bolster the re-use and the incorporation of recycled content within end markets.

“Across these initiatives, it’s essential that we take a consistent national approach. One that will promote domestic recycling and resource recovery to reduce the amount of waste going into landfill and deliver a smaller, cleaner waste stream in Australia.”

A joint statement released today by all of Australia’s federal, state and territory environment ministers committed to: Reduce the amount of waste generated and make it easier for products to be recycled. Ministers endorsed a target of 100 percent of Australian packaging being recyclable, compostable or reusable by 2025 or earlier. Governments will work with the Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation (APCO), representing over 900 leading companies, to deliver this target. Ministers endorsed the development of targets for the use of recycled content in packaging, and this will be closely monitored.

Nestlé Australia, CEO, Sandra Martinez said: “We welcome this announcement from Minister Frydenberg, as we recognise businesses must step up and find improved solutions to reduce, re-use and recycle. Nestlé is proud to be a member of APCO and is working collectively alongside industry to achieve 100% recyclable or reusable packaging by 2025.”