WRAP’s latest report under the MRF sampling regime has revealed a 1.2% increase in contamination of kerbside collected recyclables delivered to MRFs from sources in England, while Wales maintains a lower level.
For the fourth quarter of 2016, 14.1% of material was rejected by MRFs in England compared with 12.9% in the previous quarter.
It is the highest level of contamination seen in England since Q4 2015.
Wales, on the other hand, improved its rate from 11.1% to 10.3% between Q3 and Q4 2014.
Mark Penny, commercial manager at J&B Recycling, said: “There has been a lot of pressure on council budgets which has probably resulted in less money being available to promote, monitor and enforce the recycling services provided by local authorities to households.
“This could be a false economy though if the costs associated with handling more contamination and rejection increases”.
Mark continued: “Some councils have bucked the trend, for example Hull City Council, who send their kerbside to J&B have worked hard to improve the quality of material they collect.
“They have had no rejections at our MRF in 2016 and have reduced the average level of contamination in their kerbside by 0.97% compared to 2015.”
The quality of plastic produced by MRFs in England has been “gradually reducing” since Q1 2016, according to the WRAP report. Glass quality has been gradually increasing since Q4 2015.
However at J&B Recycling quality has remained as high as usual as the company closely monitors every output, including plastics.
He added: “Our analysis and MRF reports show that although our quality of plastics has always been good we have actually improved in 2016 with a 1.94% improvement on plastic content. Continually evaluating our production process and, investing in both our plant and employees have achieved this.
“MRFs can only do so much though and overall it’s the quality of the incoming material that the most important factor.
“If the contamination and waste in material sent to our MRF for sorting and recycling goes up, then likewise the amount of residual waste produced goes up too, as otherwise the quality of outputs such as plastics would then suffer.”
MRFs in England dealt with 3.8% more material in Q4 2014 compared with the previous quarter – an increase of 32,000 tonnes to more than 884,400 tonnes.
Read the full story here.
If you would like to make an enquiry or if you require further information please contact us.