Metcash signs on to National Plastics Recycling Scheme

National Plastics Recycling Scheme

Wholesale distribution company Metcash has signed on to the National Plastics Recycling Scheme (NPRS) to help close the loop on soft plastic waste. 

The NPRS, being developed by Australia’s food and grocery manufacturing industry with funding support from the Federal Government, aims to fill the gaps in Australia’s current soft plastic recycling capability and to establish a long-term circular economy for household soft plastics.

Metcash, the largest supplier to independent supermarkets in Australia including IGA and Foodland stores, is the first grocery retailer to officially sign on to support the NPRS by providing packaging data from its private label grocery products, as well as financial support and insights to shape and further promote the program.

The aims of the NPRS are to increase the availability of food-grade recycled content in packaging, incentivise sustainable packaging design and increase the recycling rate of soft plastics. Other NPRS supporters include suppliers of fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) such as Mondelēz International, Unilever and PepsiCo.

The NPRS to-date has focused on trialling kerbside collections of soft plastic household waste for recycling into food-grade plastic packaging as part of a new, onshore circular system.

Estella Young, Executive General Manager, Merchandise, Metcash Food, said NPRS was an opportunity to reduce waste to landfill through working co-operatively with industry on a scalable, long-lasting solution that is accessible to all Australians.

“Supporting the NPRS aligns with Metcash’s priorities of increasing the use of sustainable packaging in our products and reducing packaging waste in our supply chain,” Young said.

“In addition to existing initiatives we have in place to reduce waste to landfill in our distribution centres and independent retail network, by supporting the NPRS we will accelerate new packaging solutions and further help our shoppers recycle their soft-plastic household waste as conveniently as possible.”

As a member of the Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation (APCO), Metcash has adopted its 2025 national packaging targets including increasing the amount of reusable, recyclable or compostable packaging and the phase-out of problematic and unnecessary single-use packaging.

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