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Increasing recycling of glass packaging

Last winter, the Environmental Register of Packaging PYR Ltd invited tenders for partners for the recycling of glass packaging. A number of Finnish and foreign companies participated in the competitive bidding and the partner chosen was UK-based company Berryman (URM UK Ltd T/A Berryman), who have over 90 years of experience in the recycling of glass. The company treats the glass packaging waste and supplies the cullet it has processed to make new packaging.

“Two critical factors influenced our choice in Berryman’s favour: costs and the fact that glass packaging waste is re-used to make new glass packaging. The cullet shipped from Finland is mostly treated at Berryman’s treatment plant in Knottingley, from where it is taken to the adjacent glass factory for re-use as a raw material to make new glass packaging for well-known food manufacturers. Finland no longer has any industry making glass packaging. The only alternatives for recycling glass in Finland are the manufacture of foam glass and glass wool.

Berryman has ISO 9001 Quality Management Certification. In 2014, the material produced by the company was granted End of Waste (EoW) status in the EU. This means the material originating in the company’s process is not classified as waste.

“For us, Berryman was a cost-effective choice,” justifies Juha-Heikki Tanskanen, Environmental Register of Packaging PYR Ltd’s managing director. Some of the glass packaging waste collected by municipalities in Finland has currently been used for earthworks construction. This is not classified as recycling at all. The recycling rate will now rise since all the material collected will be sent for recycling,” Tanskanen points out.

Right sorting is important

“We get good-quality material to recycle when glass packaging waste is sorted in the right way. It’s ultimately up to us consumers how efficiently we can recycle glass packaging waste,” Juha-Heikki Tanskanen notes. Early next year, take-back points for glass packaging waste will open across Finland. These take-back points will be organised by industry and the retail trade. Starting in May 2015, 36 reception terminals will be capable of receiving glass packaging, including packaging from consumers, collected by participants in the waste business. Sorting instructions for glass packaging waste have been published on PYR’s website at www.pyr.fi.

Authorised by producer organisations, PYR Ltd organises a cost-effective system for collecting packaging and for recycling glass packaging. The producer organisation for non-deposit glass packaging is Suomen Keräyslasiyhdistys ry (The Finnish Glass Recycling Association). The new scheme is being set up in the light of extended producer responsibility entering into force in stages in 2015 and 2016 under the Waste Act. Liability for the cost of collecting and recycling packaging waste is being transferred from the municipalities to firms with producer responsibility. Furthermore, producers are responsible for ensuring they meet the stricter recycling demands for packaging waste under Finnish legislation.

For more information, please contact:

The Environmental Register of Packaging PYR Ltd
Juha-Heikki Tanskanen
Managing director
GSM +358 400 814 243


The Environmental Register of Packaging PYR Ltd

The Environmental Register of Packaging PYR Ltd is a non-profit service company established in 1997 and owned by Finnish industry and retail trade. We provide efficient, sustainable solutions to enable firms to comply with producer responsibility for packaging. For consumers, starting from 1 January 2016, we will provide a network of collection points for consumer packaging waste for the collection of packaging and for the recycling of glass packaging. Around 5,000 companies who bear their statutory product responsibility for packaging placed on the Finnish market have joined PYR. Thanks to a cost-efficient producer responsibility scheme funded by firms, only a small share of total packaging used remains unutilised.

Suomen Keräyslasiyhdistys ry (Finnish Glass Recycling Association)

Suomen Keräyslasiyhdistys ry (The Finnish Glass Recycling Association) was established in 1998 and is a producer organisation for non-deposit packaging glass. Companies that pack products in glass packaging or import products packed in glass packaging can transfer their product responsibility to the Finnish Glass Recycling Association by joining the Environmental Register of Packaging PYR Ltd. www.kerayslasiyhdistys.fi (in Finnish)

URM UK Ltd T/A Berryman