Less than 50% of 80 million tons of packaging is recycled


Each year, Americans trash more than 80 million tons of packaging – primarily made from plastic, paper, glass, and metal, and less than 50% of it is recycled. When it comes to plastic, the rate is less than 9%.

How can we reuse and recycle more packaging and protect the environment? Extended producer responsibility. PSI was an early advocate for packaging EPR the United States. In 2016, we developed our model packaging EPR legislation, then updated it in 2019 with input from industry and government – the first time in the U.S. that representatives from both sectors collaborated to develop a policy model for packaging EPR. In 2020, we mediated an agreement with the Flexible Packaging Association that would allow the trade organization to support packaging EPR.

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