CPIA Report Finds 99% Can Recycle PET Bottles

Residential Plastic Recycling Schemes Reach 96% of Canadians

The latest figures from the Canadian Plastics Industry Association (CPIA) show that 96% of Canadians are now able to recycle all types of transparent and opaque plastic bottles, jugs and jars through residential recycling programs.

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These three differently-coloured bins are used to sort waste in Toronto. Michalis Famelis from Toronto, ON, Canada 

The latest figures from the Canadian Plastics Industry Association (CPIA) show that 96% of Canadians are now able to recycle all types of transparent and opaque plastic bottles, jugs and jars through residential recycling programs.

The organisation explained that the Canadian Residential Plastics Packaging: Recycling Program Access Report monitors the changes taking place in Canadian residential recycling programs, tracking how they have expanded to collect a broader range of plastic packaging materials over several years.

The plastic packaging measures in the report includes both rigid containers like bottles, jugs and tubs, as well as pliable materials such as plastic bags and clear overwrap from bulk products.

As part of the analysis, the report calculated the growing percentage of Canadians who have access to residential recycling programs which collect various types of plastic packaging and plastic products.

“Plastic definitely plays a central role in recycling programs these days,” commented Carol Hochu, CPIA’s President and CEO. “As more manufacturers turn to plastic packaging, consumers are putting more of these materials into their recycling bins.”

The biggest gains in access to broader recycling programs include:

  • The percentage of Canadians who can recycle all types of plastic containers (bottles, jugs, jars, tubs and lids, clamshell boxes, etc.) increased by 6% to 67% in 2015 (up from 61% in 2014 and 53% in 2013)
  • Access to programs that accept plastic bags and overwrap (e.g., the plastic used to wrap paper towels and cases of pop) has increased 10%, to 65% in 2015 (up from 55% in 2014). This is mostly due to the City of Toronto adding plastic bags and overwrap to its program in mid-2015
  • Access to recycling programs that accept foam food and protective packaging has increased to 44% in 2015 (up from 35% in 2014), largely due to Montreal adding all foam packaging to its recycling and waste collection program
  • 60% of Canadians now have access to recycling programs that include plastic bottle caps.
  • 71% of Canadians can recycle smaller (<4L) tubs and lids and 63% can recycle larger (>4L) tubs and lids
  • 99% of Canadians can recycle PET beverage bottles.

“Recycling program managers continue to add to the list of plastics they accept as markets develop and expand,” explained Hochu.

“We’re seeing recycling programs across the country adding plastic tubs and lids, caps, plastic bags, overwrap and foam food and protective packaging to their lists of acceptable materials,” concluded the CEO.

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