Recycling in Canada

March 13, 2015

New and upgraded recycling programs across Canada have allowed the country to offer new recycling options for plastic products for residents. According to the Canadian Plastics Industry Association (CPIA), individuals residing in Canada have the highest rate of access to plastic recycling programs since CPIA began keeping records 10 years ago. This includes recycling for a wide range of plastic products, such as beverage containers, water jugs and polystyrene foam items. This increased access to recycling programs is supported by a report released in October of 2014 showing that the rate of foam recycling efforts is also making a substantial climb throughout North America.

According to the CPIA, in 2014, 61% of all Canadians had access to plastics recycling programs. This represents an 8% increase since 2013. The CPIA is working towards its overall commitment to decrease the volume of plastics being sent to landfills across Canada. According to Carol Hochu, CEO and President of CPIA, “Each year the Canadian plastics industry undertakes proactive outreach and program support to municipalities across Canada in order to increase the amount and types of plastics collected for recycling. Our 2014 study shows that Canadians have even greater opportunities to recycle plastics through their municipal programs than they did last year.”

Following the CPIA study, the EPS Industry Alliance – an association for organizations affiliated with the polystyrene foam industry – issued a statement related to recycling programs and initiatives. In its annual EPS Recycling Rate Report, the Alliance released figures showing that the rate of foam materials recycled rose to 35% in North America in 2013. This figure represents a 5% year-over-year increase, or more than 125 million pounds of post-commercial and post-consumer packaging, as well as post-industrial recovery foam that was processed and recycled in 2013. The EPS Industry Alliance credits increased foam collection efforts and new or expanded recycling programs, as well as the education efforts in regards to these programs, as the primary reasons for the increase.

Sources: