Packaging and recycling firm DS Smith has said the global downturn in secondary markets can be survived by increasing the quality of recyclates.
A DS Smith report, Defining the balance in recycling, said the company was continuing to grow – with operating profits up 17% - despite a crash in paper prices leading to a number of mills closing over the past year.
It called for clear and consistent separated municipal waste collections.
DS Smith business development and external affairs manager Peter Clayson said “improved communication” and product design was needed to minimise public confusion and reduce contamination in recyclates.
He added: “There’s still a huge global market for materials of the right quality.
“The key for paper is not that the value of the raw material has fallen in the secondary markets, it’s the fact that those who are collecting and sorting it are now having to pay the true cost of producing a quality product.”
Jonathan Scott, recycling operations manager for DS Smith’s Kemsley Mill, added: “It only takes a slight increase in the wrong sort of contamination in the waste paper for the effect on production to be very disruptive.
“In order to protect operations and meet production targets a rigorous and consistent approach to quality helps to maximise use of lower-cost fibres while preserving the efficiencies of manufacturing.”