The European Container Glass Federation (FEVE) published latest industry data showing that the EU28 average recycling rate for glass packaging hits the 73% mark for the first time. Over 25 billion glass containers continue to be recycled in a bottle to bottle closed loop making glass a model of the circular economy.
Sweden, Belgium, Luxembourg, Austria and Germany continue to be the best performers and to record striking rates (1). Italy, the Netherlands and Malta improved on previous years. However, it is Eastern Europe that is catching up as the industry begins to address the glass recycling challenges in these countries. Estonia, Slovenia, Slovak Republic and Croatia – recorded promising growth rates (2). The increased recycling efforts make Europe the continent with the highest glass recycling rates in the world.
Glass recycling enables the container glass industry to dramatically reduce its environmental footprint by saving energy and raw materials (3), and it helps maintaining 125,000 stable and local jobs in the EU. Glass plants deliver more than half of their products within 300km and more than 70% of raw materials travel less than 300km (4).