Somerset Waste Partnership and Gloucestershire Joint Waste Team have launched a pilot to encourage people to recycle trigger tops and flip caps from homecare product plastic bottles, in partnership with four corporate companies.
Tesco UK and Procter and Gamble company brand Febreze are backing the scheme, along with resource-efficiency consultants LRS Consultancy and TerraCycle, which specialises in the collection and reuse of non-recyclable waste.
Residents across Somerset and Gloucestershire are being asked to bring the caps and tops to recycling sites at 11 Tesco stores.
Trigger tops that allow products to be sprayed are made from different types of plastic to those used in bottles and often contain a metal spring and ball bearing. They therefore need to be separated for recycling.
As well as collecting the items, Tesco has trained ‘store community champions’ to provide information about the trial and will promote the initiative on community noticeboards, at customer service desks and in staff restaurants.
Febreze products are being used in marketing materials, and Proctor and Gamble is also promoting the pilot through its online channels.
Somerset Waste Partnership and Gloucestershire Joint Waste Team managing director Steve Read said participation in the trial continued the body’s aim to “always try to be at the forefront of recycling innovation”.
“Working with such a proactive and highly-experienced consortium is great for our residents,” he added.
LRS Consultancy managing director Dee Moloney said the initiative was important because non-drinks plastic bottles, such as Febreze and Fairy, are often disregarded during household recycling.
“By collaborating with large corporates and brands, we are looking to see if this will help influence consumer recycling behaviour,” she said. “We want to find out whether brands can help persuade residents to recycle these types of plastic bottles and also become more committed to recycling, making additional effort to recycle different types of plastics at locations away from the home.”
The project is funded by WRAP and Procter and Gamble as part of the Courtauld Commitment 3, an agreement signed by retailers, brands and manufacturers to reduce the weight and carbon impact of household food waste, grocery product and packaging waste.
WRAP packaging programme area manager Claire Shrewsbury said the trial, which ends in March 2015, would help the industry “understand how effective specific collection methods can be for difficult to recycle packaging and will inform how services could be introduced across the UK to increase the capture of this material”.
Alongside the trial, individuals and organisations will be encouraged to raise funds for local schools and community organisations through Febreze and TerraCycle’s Air and Home Care Brigade scheme. This allows recyclers to earn cash in return for collecting plastic air fresheners, air freshener cartridges and air freshener packaging, as well as plastic trigger tops and bottle caps.
- Courtauld Commitment 3 ends in 2015, but WRAP is currently consulting with the government and industry about extending the agreement to 2025.