FGC welcomes the announcement by the Government around changes to recycling and disposal of waste.

Chief Executive Raewyn Bleakley says the announcement is a big step in the right direction for a more sustainable economy.

“We will be very interested in the detail and understanding the latest data on littering and waste to see how the various schemes integrate and are sequenced sensibly. We look forward to working with the Government on these initiatives.

“We support the changes, particularly the new strategy to reduce waste to landfill and maximise resources, and the standardisation of household kerbside recycling.

“But we await to see if our concerns about proposals to not collect lids and tops from cans, tubs and smaller bottle tops have been heard. That proposal seems counter-intuitive to consumers wanting to recycle materials that are 100% recyclable.

“We also welcome legislation on labelling. This is work the FGC is leading, through the implementation of the Australasian Recycling Label in New Zealand.

“A major part of that work involves the FGC and The Packaging Forum leading the co-design of the Plastic Packaging Product Stewardship Scheme (PPPS), which will make recommendations to the Government on requirements for producers, brand owners, importers, retailers, and consumers to take responsibility for collecting and dealing with plastic packaging.

“That scheme isn’t due to be finalised until June next year, so we are concerned about making decisions now on kerbside collections relating to collecting only 1,2 and 5 starting next February, because it will be hard to walk back changes once consumers start to use them.

“FGC’s Sustainability Committee has been working for the past few years on a raft of other initiatives to promote recycling and the use of recycled packaging, and to eliminate plastics where possible.

“We are also part of a global leadership group on product stewardship, and are directly engaged in the Australian Food and Grocery Council’s research to design a soft plastic product stewardship scheme in Australia. Its Sustainability Committee has led ground-breaking initiatives in recycling and reusability.”

Read the Government’s announcement here