In 2013, 166,604 tonnes of aluminium packaging – primarily drinks cans, aluminium foil and aerosols – was placed on the market in the UK.
Aluminium packaging represents up to 25% of the value of materials typically collected at the kerbside. Aluminium commands the highest price per tonne for any recyclate collected at kerbside.
Aluminium represents 1% (by volume) of the domestic waste stream. This may sound like a relatively small amount but, according to WRAP’s Best Practice Guide on the collection of aerosols and aluminium foil, the high value of aluminium means that even small amounts yield reasonable cost savings for authorities that have a revenue sharing agreement with their waste management firm or materials recovery facility (MRF).
How easy is it to add aluminium?
Most local authorities already recycle mixed cans. They are easily collected within both commingled or source separated systems, and materials recovery facilities (MRFs) are well-equipped to sort aluminium from steel.
In recent years, many councils have added materials like aerosols, foil trays and household foil to meet householders’ desire to recycle more at home. Alupro would like to see all local authorities collecting all these materials and realising the value from this material stream.
We know that householders are keen to recycle more materials. Alupro offers a range of support to local authorities who are expanding or promoting their recycling activity, including communications resources to help achieve maximum participation (see our Media Library).
The government’s Waste Policy Review 2011 highlighted aluminium as a priority material for recycling initiatives and it is a core part of Alupro’s mission to encourage and support those authorities that are collecting, or would like to capture more, of this valuable waste stream.Why collect aluminium?