New figures released show the European steel packaging recycling rate has hit a record 72%.
According to the Association of European Producers of Steel for Packaging (APEAL), in 2009 steel packaging recycling rates increased by 2% to over 72%.This puts the steel recycling rate well ahead of other packaging materials including plastic at 30%, beverage cartons at 34% and glass at 67%.
The European champion for steel recycling is Belgium, for the ninth consecutive year with a recycling rate of 98%. This is closely followed by Germany and the Netherlands, which both exceed 87%, and benefit from efficient national kerbside collection systems .
The UK trails behind at 19th place, with a rate of 60%. Huge improvements have been seen in other European countries with Poland achieving an increase of 20%, which has been attributed to the introduction of ferromagnetic sorting methods in several waste sorting facilities in 2009.