The Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation says “significant action across the supply chain” is needed for Australia to meet the 2025 National Packaging Targets.
In a new report on the state of packaging in Australia and progress towards the 2025 targets, APCO said the volume of plastic “placed on market” in 2018-19 had declined by six percent from the previous year.
A further encouraging development was that the volume of recyclable packaging on market had climbed from 35 percent to 38 percent, closing in on the 2025 target of 50 percent.
However, these results had been offset by an increase in the volume of paper and paperboard (16 percent), metal (16 percent) and glass (1 percent).
According to the report, the recycling rate of plastics constitutes the biggest challenge to meeting the goal of recycling or composting 70 percent of plastic packaging by 2025.
“These findings clearly support the need for stronger interventions into the way Australia manages plastic packaging, a need that will be met through the ANZPAC Plastics Pact which is set to launch in early 2021.”
APCO chief executive Brooke Donnelly said: “There are plenty of positives to take away from this year’s findings and it’s particularly heartening to see that almost nine out 10 items of packaging on shelves can now be recycled.
“However, what the data reiterates for us yet again is that plastic recycling is the critical issue that needs to be addressed.”
Ms Donnelly said she expected the ANZAC Plastics Pact “will bring a renewed investment collaboration and energy to tackling the plastics issue for the Oceania region”.