That's a scary thought ..
As reported in the Guardian , Round-the-world sailor Dame Ellen MacArthur launched a $2m (£1.5m) competition in partnership with the Prince of Wales in London on May 18th to encourage the reduction of plastics in the world’s oceans and target the 30% of plastic packaging that cannot be recycled because of the way it is constructed.
Globally, only 14% of plastic packaging is collected for recycling and by 2050 there could be more plastic than fish, MacArthur warned.
Simon Ellin of the Recycling Association has accused the Pringles brand as an example of failure to consider recycling in design by using several materials for packaging them – other offenders include Lucozade Sport and whisky packaging.
He said the biggest problems came when multiple materials were used in the same packaging. In the case of Pringles,
“What idiot designed this in terms of recyclability? We’ve got a cardboard tube, a metal bottom, a plastic lid and was also critical of Lucozade Sport and bottles with a similar design, where a recyclable bottle is enclosed in a sleeve made from a different type of plastic. He called the design the “No 2 villain”.
“This bottle is so confusing to computer scanners that it has to be picked by hand off the recycling conveyor,” he said. “Then it often just gets chucked away.”
Product designers need to retreat from “the Pringles factor” in order to make their packaging more recyclable, and cleaning products in spray bottles were misleading when they claimed to be recyclable because of the presence of other polymers and a metal spring. Colouring that made some plastic food trays black – so red meat looks more appetising – made them “worthless”. He also said the metal in whisky packaging made it a problem for recycling.