Two out of five Dutch people recycle drink cans outdoors

Two out of five Dutch people recycle drink cans outdoors

Two out of five Dutch people recycle drink cans outdoors 2560 1707 Matina Zavoudaki

A positive increase compared to 2022.

Two out of five Dutch people recycle their empty drink cans when they are outdoors. This is shown by research by Every Can Counts (May 2023), the European Initiative that inspires and encourages the recycling of beverage cans. This is a positive increase compared to a year earlier. In 2022, only 23% of the Dutch indicated that they recycled cans outside their home. The deposit on cans is already having a positive effect. Nevertheless, with over 2,5 billion drink cans consumed in The Netherlands every year, there is still room for improvement.

On-the-go recycling 

On the go, in public places and during festivals and events (such as King’s Day, Liberation Festival and Pride) – we massively consume canned drinks. But on-the-go is exactly when people find it difficult to recycle their empty drink cans and where recycling points are still rare. This is mainly the case during festivals and major events (36%), but also in public spaces such as the park and on the street (35%). More than 60% of the Dutch, therefore, plead that there should be more recycling points outdoors for the recycling and returning of drink cans.

“The introduction of the deposit on drinks cans is a step in the right direction, but when it comes to cans used on the go, in public places, during festivals and sports events, we can really make a difference. This is also evident from the research. More than half of the Dutch people indicated that they sometimes leave a drink can at the place where they consume it. These findings are an important signal that there is still work to be done in terms of awareness and behavioural change. But also that there should be more good recycling and collection solutions for outdoor use.”

David Van Heuverswyn, director of Every Can Counts Europe

Metal recycles forever

Aluminium cans are one of the most popular beverage packaging materials in the world and for good reason. Aluminium beverage cans have many durable properties. Research by ECC (2023) shows that many Dutch still need to be made aware of the sustainability of aluminium cans. Only 15% of the Dutch chose aluminium cans over plastic, glass and cardboard when it comes to sustainable packaging material.

For example, did you know…

  • A recycled beverage can, can be on the shelves as a new beverage can in just 60 days.
  •  By producing new aluminium beverage cans from recycled cans instead of ‘new’ primary aluminium, up to 95% less energy is used, and just as much less harmful emissions are generated.
  •  The ecological footprint of aluminium becomes smaller when more aluminium cans are recycled.

More than enough reason to promote “on-the-go” recycling by showing how easy it is and to enlarge environmental consciousness by sharing the difference we can all make as individuals. One can at a time because every can counts.