Presenting our 2019-20 Annual Report. A year on from our inaugural report where we published our 2018 baseline we can now present our 2019 data highlights and member actions. 

The 2019 data show that UK Plastics Pact members are making some progress against all four targets however it is a mixed picture with significant challenges in certain areas which will impact on the delivery of the targets if not addressed as a matter of urgency.

Progress and the challenges that lie ahead

Blazing a trail on plastics

Hear from our Strategic Engagement Manager for The UK Plastics Pact, Helen Bird

2019 Data Highlights

Target 1
400 million
items classed as problematic or unnecessary sold by Pact members in the UK in 2019 (a 40% reduction).
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Target 2
64%
of plastic packaging placed on the market by Pact members continues to be recyclable
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Target 3
50%
The amount of plastic packaging recycled in the UK (Up from 44% in 2018)
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Target 4
13%
Average recycled content in Pact members plastic packaging (up from 9% in 2018)
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Progress & challenges

  • Target 1 - Pact members are on track to eliminate 6 out of 8 of the items classed as problematic or unnecessary by the end of 2020, however there remains challenges as some items have proven tougher to eliminate. These include PVC used used in pharmaceutical packaging and polystyrene used to package multi pack yogurts.
     
  • Target 2 - Although we are seeing positive progress in the areas of packaging redesign, reuse and refill trials and the removal of
    non-NIR detectable black plastic at scale -  to make the inroads needed on this target, urgent action must be taken to make flexible plastic packaging widely recyclable in the UK.

     
  • Target 3 - The amount of plastic packaging that is being recycled is moving in the right direction from 44% in 2018 to 50% in 2019. This momentum must continue. We must continue to encourage citizens to recycle more and build our recycling capacity and capability in the UK.
     
  • Target 4 - Average recycled content has increased from 9% in 2018 to 13% in 2019 which equates to 700,000 barrels of virgin oil production, saving 65,997 tonnes of CO2e. We are moving in the right direction but we must do more to achieve our targets  including the development and investment in new technologies for sorting and processing plastic packaging. 

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