The average Brit will recycle almost one quarter of a million items over the course of their lifetime, according to research

Friday, 17th September 2021, 8:43 am

A study into 2,000 people found the average person will put 16,380 plastic bottles, 15,397 cardboard boxes and 12,448 yoghurt pots into their recycling bin over the typical adult lifespan of 63 years.

A further 31,449 tins and cans, 15,069 envelopes and 12,776 glass bottles will also make their way into recycling.

Households will also responsibly discard 8,845 newspapers and 5,896 pizza boxes.

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Three in 10 Brits say their recycling bin is completely full to the point of overflowing each week before collection day, with the majority (55 per cent) of the population having it collected fortnightly.

Nearly three quarters of parents say their children influence the family’s recycling habits at home, and 59 per cent of parents believe their children are extra-motivated to positively impacting the environment.

Not educated enough on recycling

The research, commissioned by Robinsons, also found despite making such an effort to stay on top of their recycling, 42 per cent of respondents don’t feel educated enough about their impact on the environment.

Another 58 per cent suspect they could be doing more to be eco-conscious in their day-to-day life.

There is still confusion around what can and can’t be recycled, with three in 10 unsure about soft plastics like cereal box liners – which can be recycled via specific recycling facilities at most local supermarkets.

One in five also don’t know that you can recycle tin foil which is widely recycled in a lot of councils, and 22 per cent feel confused about what to do with wine corks – which you can actually put in your home compost bin.

One in four Brits ‘always’ take a re-usable bottle out with them when they leave the house – most likely filled with water or a fruit squash according to the OnePoll figures.

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The parents role

Two-thirds of mums and dads believe school is responsible for instilling green values in their children, with just 42 per cent of parents taking the credit themselves.

But, 31 per cent worry ‘a great deal’ about the state of the world which is being left behind for the next generation.

Charlie White, brand director at Robinsons, said: “We’re pleased that recycling is continuing to be at the forefront of consumer’s minds, and we’re thrilled to be supporting WRAP’s Recycle Week again this year as an official donor, helping the nation step up their recycling behaviours at home and on the go.

"As a brand, helping consumers make more sustainable choices is important to us and that is why we have pledged to make all Robinsons bottles from 100% rPET by the end of 2022.”

Craig Stephens, campaign manager for Recycle Now, added: “We’re thrilled to have Robinsons’ support for this year’s campaign.

"This year we are focussed on how recycling can help fight climate change and how by recycling even better we can have a bigger impact on our environment.

"The research that has been done strengthens the message of the campaign and how we can all do just a little bit more to make an even bigger impact on climate change”.

You can find out more about Recycle Week, and how to recycle, at https://www.recyclenow.com/

WHAT BRITS RECYCLE IN A LIFETIME:

Pieces of paper – 22,932

Plastic bottles – 16,707

Tin cans – 31,449

Cardboard boxes – 15,397

Envelopes – 15,069

Plastic (other) – 14,086

Plastic pots – 14,086

Cardboard – (other) -13,759

Glass bottles or jars – 12,776

Yoghurt pots - 12,448

Milk bottles – 9,828

Glass (other) – 9,172

Newspapers – 8,845

Metal (other) – 7,534

Wine bottles –7,207

Magazines – 7,207

Pizza boxes – 5,896

TOTAL - 224,362