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New food and drink carton recycling pilot launches in Cornwall

13/08/2018 New food and drink carton recycling pilot launches in Cornwall

Residents can now take food and drink cartons and paper cups for recycling at seven Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRC) in Cornwall thanks to a partnership between The Alliance for Beverage Cartons and the Environment (ACE UK) and Cornwall Council.

In Cornwall an estimated 450 tonnes of beverage cartons are put out for waste collection each year. With the new bring banks available in HWRCs across Cornwall, residents are being urged to take their empty cartons and paper cups along with any waste or recycling that can't be collected by the Council's kerbside collection service.


The new bring banks are being supplied by The Alliance for Beverage Cartons and the Environment (ACE UK), representing its members Tetra Pak, Elopak and SIG Combibloc.

The service is a two-year pilot supported by ACE UK. All cartons and paper cups collected at the recycling banks will be taken to ACE UK's specialist facility near Halifax. 

Cornwall's Household Waste and Recycling Centres handle more than 80,000 tonnes of waste each year, of which more than half is sent for recycling, explained Cornwall Council portfolio holder for environment and public protection Sue James.

"People have been asking about recycling food and beverage cartons for some time, so I'm pleased ACE UK are working with us to provide this service at seven of our HWRCs," she said. "Having bring banks based at our HWRCs will allow people to bring their cartons with them when making a trip to their local centre.

"We know from surveys that residents want to be able to recycle more. While we can’t include this as part of our current kerbside collections we are asking the bidders for the 2020 kerbside collection contract to consider collecting additional materials, such as these cartons."

Mandy Kelly, Senior Recycling Manager, ACE UK said: “It’s great news that food and drink cartons and paper cup recycling has now come to Cornwall. From our conversations with the Council we know residents are keen to recycle cartons, so we are extremely pleased to install bring banks at these seven sites – and of course all cartons and cups collected will be recycled here in the UK.” 

Residents are advised to wash and squash cartons and replace the caps before placing in the bring banks – and only paper coffee-type cups should be deposited in the banks, no other cups can be accepted.

HWRCs with recycling banks for beverage cartons and paper cups can be found at:

Notes for Editors

Food and drink cartons are easily recycled using a simple pulping process, where the paperboard and non-fibre layers are separated and turned into new materials. The wood fibres can be used to produce new high-strength paper products, such as cores and tubes for consumer and industrial applications, while the polymer and foil layers can be used to make items such as garden furniture, children’s play mats, and construction materials.

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Beverage carton recycling in the UK

  • Total no. of
    local
    authorities
    391
  • Local authorities collecting
    cartons
    359 (92%)
  • Local authorities collecting cartons from kerbside 263 (67%)
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