Recently, the Australian Packaging Covenant Organization (APCO) endorsed a target of achieving 100 percent recyclable, reusable or compostable packaging by 2025.
On April 27, 2018, APCO was endorsed in a Meeting of the Environment Ministers (MEM) to lead Australia’s response to China’s National Sword policies, setting a target in line with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s three-year plastics initiative project. APCO CEO Brooke Donnelly is calling the lead historic target “one of the most ambitious and decisive environmental targets to be supported in Australia.”
Donnelly says that APCO recognizes Federal, State and Territory Governments as key players in creating sustainable packaging solutions, and that the Organization 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.”
To help Australia adjust to China’s new bans, APCO is calling for a uniform national approach that promotes domestic recycling – this not only reduces waste going into landfill, but it will also produce a cleaner waste stream for better material production in Australia. Better recycling may also result in recyclables meeting China’s strict contamination threshold of 0.5 percent in order to pass inspections for import.
All of Australia’s federal, state and territory environment ministers have released a joint statement of their commitment to “reduce the amount of waste generated and make it easier for products to be recycled.”
Ministers will closely monitor the development of targets for recycled content in packaging.