We proactively position and support the positive attributes and image of metal packaging through joint marketing, environmental and technical initiatives.
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Circular Economy in a nutshell
The Circular Economy Package has introduced a fundamental shift in packaging and packaging waste policy, making circularity the reference point. The Circular Economy Package is crucial starting point for a successful transition to a circular economy, in which the value of products, materials, and resources is maintained in the economy for as long as possible. Find out what it implies and where metal packaging is placed in the below factsheet.
Economic Footprint: Consumer rigid metal packaging in Europe
Our membership covers more than 760 companies, employing over 177,000 people. 90% of member companies are small and medium-sized enterprises. Together, they produce some 98bn units every year for the beverage, food, health & beauty, household and industrial markets. Find out more about the metal packaging industry in Europe in the factsheet below.
Recycling metal packaging: report by Euractiv
New EU-wide recycling targets, adopted last year, will have a significant influence on the way people recycle things like beverage cans. Together with Metal Packaging Europe, EURACTIV looks at how difficult it will be to meet the new targets.
Concept of Permanent Materials
In order to move towards a true resource efficient 'Recycling Society', it is key that we make a clear distinction between recycling which leads to gradual degradation of the material and recycling which keeps the material in the loop without losing its intrinsic characteristics. Made from permanent materials, metal packaging saves resources and it ideally placed to contribute to the Circular Economy.
To learn about the two pillars of the Concept of Permanent Materials, i.e. inherent material properties and material stewardship, please see the Carbotech study. A summary and presentation are also available for download below.
Find out more about our sustainability story here.
LCA & LCI Dataset
The Metal Packaging Europe Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) study identifies the average environmental impact (s) of the life cycle of metal packaging products manufactured in Europe.
The report showcases the industry’s contribution to sustainable development, which is perfectly aligned with circular economy thinking. The LCA - which is ISO 14040/44 compliant - uses 2013 data, provided by the leading can makers and their suppliers, and covers the aerosol, food, general line, and speciality sectors.
For LCA modeling the Life Cycle Inventories (LCIs) of the production stages and some selected further life cycle stages of the average metal packaging produced in Europe are available.
The Metal Packaging Europe Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) study was conducted by RDC Environment, an independent international environmental consultancy firm, and peer-reviewed by Solinnen, an environmental consultancy specialised in LCA practices.
Recycled content and the case for metal packaging
In the case of rigid metal packaging, only recycling will pay off: Recycling brings an environmental benefit no matter for which metal application the recycled material is subsequently used – the material loop is working. Whatever the next application or product (automotive, construction, packaging etc.), the environmental benefit occurs at the time of re-melting the collected metal packaging (when scrap substitutes primary material) and not at the point of re-shaping the secondary material.
Both, steel and aluminium, face a strong multi-market demand for scrap, which has always exceeded the supply of scrap. Given this market situation, a recycled content approach would divert the scrap flow from one stream to another, adding potential system costs and bringing no added environmental benefit.
Recycled content and metal packaging in the context of LCA modelling
In LCAs for metal packaging, the end of life recycling rate approach should be used as most adequate proxy. See further explanation in 'Recycled content and metal packaging in the context of LCA modelling'.