Tetra Pak, the world’s leading food processing and packaging solutions company, has announced the results of a research conducted in 2011 with World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF)-Pakistan to determine the percentage of used-beverage cartons (UBCs) in the mixed paper streams of 25 paper mills nationwide. The research reveals that the recycling of UBCs has grown to almost 9400 tonnes in 2011, mainly due to the enhanced natural demand of paper content, which accounts for almost 75% of the packaging in a beverage carton.
The main objective of the study was to quantify the percentage of UBC that is recycled into paper and other products, while educating mill owners on the utility of by-products such as fibre, polyethylene and aluminium which are produced as a result of recycling UBCs. Previously, the fibre by-product was utilized in creating pulp but polyethylene and aluminium were disposed off at dumping sites, resulting in environmental detriment and the wasteful occupation of land that could be used for productive purposes.
Results of the research conducted show that in 2010, only 1.5 to 10 percent of the waste paper streams being supplied to the paper mills comprised of UBCs whereas, in 2011, it was discovered that the contribution of UBCs had risen to a share of almost 12 to 20 percent of the total waste stream. In most cases the overall quantity of waste paper recycling has shown an increase, which demonstrates increased acceptance of UBCs in mixed paper waste by the mills.
Speaking of the encouraging results, Jawad A. Khan, Environment Manager Tetra Pak Pakistan said, “This positive development owes to a number of key factors. The inclusion of UBCs in mixed paper waste results in a cost differential of Rs 5 per kg which incentivises its utility for the paper mills. Secondly, with a shortage of brown paper waste, UBC is quickly gaining acceptance as a viable alternative raw material. Growing interest was also shown by the paper mills towards accepting technical solutions to process UBCs. This was made possible through increased awareness of the commercial value of UBC recycling and the usefulness of its polyethylene and aluminium by-products.”
The results of this study are exceptionally positive and indicate that the recycling of UBCs is rapidly gaining momentum in the recycling industry. Role-playing paper mills are enthusiastic to cooperate in new initiatives that will increase their recycling of UBCs, given that they receive the appropriate guidance and technology to do so. What was once an industry that was previously assumed to be in its nascent stage has started to develop and is flourishing quickly. Growth means that there is more business for the small and medium entrepreneurs who make their livelihoods through the recycling of waste and that the society is contributing positively to the environment as its carbon footprint is reduced.
About Tetra Pak®
Tetra Pak® is the world’s leading food processing and packaging solutions company. Working closely with our customers and suppliers, we provide safe, innovative and environmentally sound products that each day meet the needs of hundreds of millions of people in more than 170 countries around the world. With almost 22,000 employees based in over 85 countries, we believe in responsible industry leadership and a sustainable approach to business. Our motto, “PROTECTS WHAT’S GOOD™,” reflects our vision to make food safe and available, everywhere.
More information about Tetra Pak is available at www.tetrapak.com
Asst. Media Manager