- Out of more than 804,000 tonnes of packaging that entered the Belgian market in 2021, 89.8% was recycled, 80% of this in Belgium.
- The selective collection, sorting and recycling of household packaging account for a saving of 850,000 tonnes of CO2, or the equivalent of 315,000 cars.
- All Belgians use the New Blue Bag and collected an average of 6 kg extra PMD in 2021.
- Thanks to investments in new sorting centres and additional recycling plants, recycling is increasingly becoming a local activity.
- In order to tackle litter effectively, the Click is being further expanded.
In 2021, we recycled 29.7 kg of glass, 16.6 kg of paper/cardboard packaging and 16.4 kg of PMD materials per person. The share of PMD, especially plastic packaging materials, continues to increase, mainly due to the further roll-out of the New Blue Bag.
Thanks to the introduction of the New Blue Bag, Belgium performs better than the Belgian (50% in 2021) and European (50% in 2025) targets with a recycling rate of 52% for plastic.
Additional 3000 tonnes of PMD collected outside the home
A new benchmark in collection outside the home: 22,000 tonnes, or 3,000 tonnes more than in 2020, thanks in part to 1,250 companies that were eligible for bonus for starting a sorting programme for PMD.
More sorting capacity, recycling close to home
In order to sort the larger quantities of collected PMD packaging as efficiently and sustainably as possible, Fost Plus decided to invest in five high-tech sorting centres in Belgium in 2019. Four opened in 2021, and the last one, in Liège, will become operational at the end of 2022.
80% of the collected and sorted packaging materials are recycled in Belgium. Moreover, we are working hard on additional recycling capacity for plastics. Thanks to five new recycling plants, more than 75% of plastic packaging material will be recycled domestically from 2024 onwards. The decision about the fifth recycling plant on Belgian soil is in the final stage.
Five new municipalities make the Click
The fight against litter will become even more important in the coming years.
In 2020, Fost Plus launched the Click, a project in which people are rewarded if they pick up litter or throw away consumer packaging in the appropriate bin. Antwerp, Blankenberge, Middelkerke and Namur joined in 2021. Anderlecht followed at the beginning of 2022. The Click now has almost 23,500 users who together have 'clicked' 52,000 times.
Finally, the annual cost per person of selective collection, sorting and recycling of household packaging remains stable at €15 per person. With a recycling rate of almost 90%, the citizen gets excellent value for money thanks to the centralised management and close cooperation between the different parties.