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(16 Posts)
Wheniwasyourage Sun 03-Feb-19 16:24:02

Is it just me, or does anyone else wonder if some of our big firms are trying to weasel out of letting us recycle efficiently?

Our council recycles plastic bottles and food trays marked with a 1 or a 2 but not a 5 (or any other number). Not as good as some councils, but fair enough. Recently I have been very annoyed when the card wrapper on something says "Check local recycling" for the plastic tray, and then there is no number marked on the tray. This has happened recently with ready-made starters from Tesco and deli items from M&S. What is the point in claiming to tell your customers that your packaging may be recyclable, and then not giving them any details? angry

MiniMoon Sun 03-Feb-19 17:22:33

Our local authority is woeful in its ability to recycle waste. When the scheme started we could put aluminium foil, cling film, plastic pots e.g. yogurt pots into the bin.
Now it's been reduced to card and paper, and plastic bottles and cans.
My DD used to be able to recycle food waste when she lived in Argyll, and was very disappointed at the lack of recycling facilities when she moved back to Northumberland.

Wheniwasyourage Mon 04-Feb-19 15:52:47

Ok, so it is just me then!

tanith Mon 04-Feb-19 16:03:20

I’ve never heard about numbers on trays I just know I can’t put in black plastic or plastic wrapping or tray covers.
Our council recycles most things including food.

janeainsworth Mon 04-Feb-19 16:44:32

I agree minimoon
I don’t know why Northumberland is so pathetic about plastics. They have actually won an award for their garden waste recycling.
I would gladly wash out yoghurt pots snd food trays & it makes me cross having to put them in the bin.
Did you know that if you go to Morrison’s fresh meat & fish counter, you can take your own container instead of having your stuff wrapped in plastic?
I’ve only just started going there & was impressed.

Farmor15 Mon 04-Feb-19 17:11:03

I think the problem may be that a lot of plastic used to be exported for recycling but the countries taking it have got fussier, as a lot, particularly soft plastic wasn’t easily recyclable. They then were left to dispose of it.

Elegran Mon 04-Feb-19 17:48:16

Tanith The numbers are also on other plastic things, including bottles,. Have a look at plastic items and you will see a triangle with a number in the centre. It shows what kind of plastic the item is made of. There is a list of them with the kind of thing made of each type at and a link to a "cheat sheet" which can be printed out.

The black plastic is not always welcome, not because there is anything particularly wrong with it, but because most of the machines that automatically sort recycling stuff can't recognise it due to the black pigment, so it gets passed by and ends up in landfill.

Elegran Mon 04-Feb-19 17:50:08

Apparently Waitrose has pledged to gradually stop using black trays. "It has already removed 65 per cent of the black plastic used across its fresh fruit and vegetables packaging, and by the end of 2019 the retailer will have removed it from its meat, poultry and fish ranges, too. "

Wheniwasyourage Mon 04-Feb-19 17:55:23

Yes, all that you all say is true, but the point I have obviously made badly is that by saying "Check local recycling", these firms are implying that in at least some places, their plastic trays can be recycled, but when you look at the trays themselves, they have no recycling number on them. That is what is annoying me - I think it is virtue signalling (sorry, fellow pedants - couldn't resist the trendy expression!) and they are being too lazy to ensure that their suppliers give any thought to recycling.

Elegran Mon 04-Feb-19 18:39:58

Contact the manufacturer and point this out, "Wheniwasyourage". It is misinformation - if there is no indication on the tray what kind of plastic it is, no-one can be expected to tell whether their LA can recycle it.

MissAdventure Mon 04-Feb-19 18:46:28

'Widely recyclable' is something I find difficult.
What am I supposed to do with it?

Fennel Mon 04-Feb-19 20:08:54

Having moved around th country a lot last year and seen the different recycling instructions, I can understand the confusion.
There was another thread about this, and I think the consensus was that council rules depend on what recycling companies are locally available. These independent companies specialise in one type of material.

Wheniwasyourage Tue 12-Feb-19 17:44:07

Sorry Elegran, have been distracted by visiting DGC (and very nice too). The trouble about contacting the manufacturer is that there is often no reference to a manufacturer, just to the supermarket, if it's an own brand. I am waiting for a reply to an email I sent to Tesco yesterday about the problem, but with no great hopes...

Fennel, I know which plastics our council recycles (1 and 2 only), but that's not much use when there is no symbol n the plastic tray!

Wheniwasyourage Wed 13-Feb-19 16:45:27

Tesco have replied twice. The first time they said that as the plastics are not recycled by every council, they could not say "Widely recycled". That was not what I asked. They also said that the customer should refer to the local authority. (They also got my name wrong.)

When I said that they had not answered my question, and that I couldn't consult my local authority if I didn't know what I was consulting about, I got another reply from the same person. This time he got my name right and said that he agreed that the appropriate recycling symbol should be on packaging, and that he would pass that on to the relevant departments.

Let us hope that he is successful, even if it does take him two attempts to read and understand an email!

Grammaretto Wed 13-Feb-19 17:02:51

Why oh why can't it be the same rules countywide!
What angers me most is when I've carefully separated my packaging into our blue bin or garden waste into the brown, I catch the bin men emptying everything into the landfill lorry because they haven't enough time/staff/sense to take it seriously.

I try to avoid packaging. Our local community shop is pretty good and I can pick all fruit and veg directly into my basket. Milk bottles are glass returnable.

But however hard you try an awful lot is still not recyclable.

Wheniwasyourage Wed 13-Feb-19 17:08:29

Yes, and then it's our fault that recycling rates are too low! The ones who should, and can, do something about it are the suppliers, and they should be being pressurised by the supermarkets. angry