Fost Plus promotes, coordinates and finances the selective collection, sorting and recycling of household packaging waste in Belgium. Fost Plus is a not-for-profit organization, set up and financed by industry. It cooperates with inter-municipalities, private waste management companies and recyclers to organize the collection and recycling of household packaging. This includes glass, paper-cardboard and PMD (Plastic bottles & flasks, Metal packaging and Drinks cartons).
Your Subtitle Goes Here
In order to achieve the stringent legal recycling objectives, obliged companies can become a member of Fost Plus. They are required to pay a contribution to Fost Plus, depending on the quantity and the type of packaging they put onto the market.
Fost Plus cooperates with inter-municipal authorities, who are responsible for waste management within their borders. They can execute the selective collection themselves or use the services of specialized subcontractors.
In order to guarantee an efficient collection, Fost Plus foresees the following collection scheme:
- PMD: transparent blue bags are collected door-to-door. They can only contain plastic bottles and flasks, metal packaging and drinks cartons.
- Paper and cardboard are collected door-to-door.
- Glass is collected via bottle banks. Colored glass is separated from white glass.
Glass, paper and cardboard go straight to recycling companies. The blue PMD bags are first taken to sorting centers, where they are sorted into mono-material streams (PET bottles, HDPE flasks, aluminium packaging, steel packaging and drinks cartons) before going to specialized recyclers.
Fost Plus is the driving force behind the recycling of household packaging in Belgium. Fost Plus works with public and private partners to create a circular economy for household packaging, from collection among the general public to sustainable recycling in our own country.
Recycling all packaging
Packaging is an essential part of society. It plays an important role in the storage and protection of products, especially food. Thanks to a well-developed collection, sorting and recycling Belgian system, Fost Plus reduces the impact on the environment and ensures that packaging can stay in the chain as new raw material. When packaging is useful and necessary, Fost Plus provides a recycling solution, helping companies to make sustainable packaging choices and encouraging the development of new technologies and recycling markets.
Cooperating in a unique ecosystem
A whole chain of public and private parties is involved in the collection, sorting and recycling of packaging: authorities and inter-municipal companies, collection companies, sorting centres and recycling companies, producers and consumers. Fost Plus is the linchpin in this unique ecosystem, promoting cooperation all along the chain and making sure that all packaging can be recycled in the most efficient and sustainable way. Tomorrow’s economy is a circular economy where we keep raw materials in the chain as much as possible.
Your Subtitle Goes Here
The correct sorting of packaging waste is essential in order to guarantee an effective recycling process. That is why Fost Plus continuously invests in campaigns that remind the public at large of the sorting guidelines and the reasons why, both at a national and a local level.
Sorting is a natural reflex for consumers in their homes. Outside of the residential environment however, sorting does not come as naturally. Fost Plus launches several initiatives to stimulate people to sort – at school, at work, on the beach, during festivals, in sports and recreational centres, and in public places such as stations and airports – and to support organizations in setting up or improving their waste management.
At the same time, Fost Plus and its members continue their battle against litter; the uncivilized behaviour of consumers who abandon their waste in public places. Packaging that ends up as litter is lost to the circular economy.
Ultimately, so that packaging material would be recycled, the packaging must be compatible with the collection, sorting and recycling chain. Fost Plus supports and informs companies on design for recycling initiatives. To that end, Fost Plus created together with Valipac the platform www.packitbetter.be, the Belgian hub for ecodesign.
Your Subtitle Goes Here
The circular economy is also a local economy
All the packaging put in the New Blue Bag is recycled in Belgium and in neighboring countries: FostPlus does not only limit the environmental impact, but it also makes a welcome contribution to the local economy. Almost 80% of the materials collected by Fost Plus are processed in Belgium itself.
All materials collected by Fost Plus today are processed and recycled in Europe to produce secondary raw materials. Almost 80% is processed here in Belgium and almost 20% more in the neighbouring countries of Germany, France and the Netherlands.
The New Blue Bag takes another step further. From now on, the packaging is sorted in five brand-new high-tech sorting centres in Belgium. Over the next few years, new recycling plants are to be built in Belgium as well. This way, the circular economy also becomes a local economy.
Recycling close to home brings nothing but advantages!
Lower environmental impact: Recycling packaging close to home is essential to avoid transporting it over long distances. This limits CO2 emissions from trucks.
Sorting and recycling packaging materials is a major economic activity that creates a good many jobs. FostPlus employs a total of 15000 people in Belgium for the sorting and recycling of packaging. The new sorting and recycling centres for the New Blue Bag are to create another 500 direct and almost twice as many indirect jobs.
FostPlus website indicates the sorting centers and the recycling plants where the PMD, glass and paper-cardboard collected in Belgium are processed.