Canada should be a global leader in enabling a fully circular economy for packaging.

As a best practice leader in the sector, the beverage industry continues to be at the forefront of driving transformation and progress in the collection, recycling, and repurposing of its packaging from coast to coast.

A national recycling strategy would facilitate a seamless and consistent approach to recycling. Through harmonization, recycling affiliates and stakeholders can help to establish realistic recycling targets, enforce extended producer responsibility, and provide a framework for consistency across the country.

Streamlined Recycling for All Canadians

A national recycling framework would provide the standardization, streamlined processes, and efficiency needed to increase recovery rates across Canada.

This framework would provide key benefits including:

  • Improved Consumer Experience: Harmonized recycling practices would provide clarity for consumers. Standardized collection methods, including what beverage containers and packaging can and cannot be included in recycling systems. This would make recycling more straightforward and intuitive.
  • Closing the Loop for Canadians: The demand for recycled PET in beverage container manufacturing currently exceeds market supply. A national framework could establish a system to prioritize the return of materials that can be recycled and used in food-grade packaging by producers at fair market value.
  • Opportunities to Reinvest in Canada: A national focus on infrastructure would unlock savings due to the significant economy of scale associated with recycling. Recycling affiliates could work together to invest in processing facilities, optimize transportation routes, and create a more predictable and stable market for recycled materials.

Our Recycling Affiliates

Facilitating Collaboration, Innovation and Data-Driven Results

The success of a national recycling framework hinges on collaboration. The federal government can act as a catalyst, fostering communication and understanding, but success ultimately lies at the provincial level.

To achieve the required collaboration, we recommend the following:

  • Engaging with the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment: The Federal Government should use this existing leadership mechanism to build consensus and understand the Provinces’ needs. The solutions to improve our recycling systems are not top-down. The provinces and territories need achievable targets and need to be invested in a pathway to meet them.
  • Supporting Innovation and Research: Financial incentives and grants on the federal level can encourage investment in innovative recycling technology. Additional financial support could go towards the continuous improvement and innovation of the system, closing the loop and enabling higher recover rates while minimizing the burden on taxpayers.
  • Investing in Data Collection: A national framework requires robust data to track progress. By leveraging existing data collection systems, we can gain valuable insights into our recycling system’s effectiveness and identify areas for improvement.


Up to 30% of recyclable materials end up in landfills due to confusion over regional recycling regulations. Learn More