More than three-quarters of European consumers see glass as the most environmentally friendly packaging material – 50% higher than 2008 – according to a Europe-wide surveyed commissioned by industry body Friends of Glass.
Almost 18,000 consumers in 11 European countries were surveyed, with the findings suggesting that perceptions of glass packaging are improving.
Friends of Glass said that, while glass is regarded as one of the most sustainable and eco-friendly forms of packaging, more education on its benefits is needed. There are still many Europeans who are not fully aware of the benefits glass offers to the environment, including many not realising that glass is infinitely recyclable.
Adeline Farrelly, secretary general of FEVE, the European Container Glass Federation, said: “It is encouraging to see that consumers have become more conscious of the positive sustainable benefits of glass packaging. Whilst these results are reassuring, as an industry, we cannot be complacent, and we remain committed in our focus to inform consumers about the unique sustainable and recycling properties of glass.”
“No matter how many times it is recycled, the permanent nature of glass means that its quality never diminishes – glass remains glass. Nowadays, Europeans can actively contribute to achieve a 100% recycling rate by bringing their used glass bottles and jars to the nearest bottle bank. Glass can be infinitely recycled as part of a positive circular economy and within a closed loop.”
The research also highlights that older generations buy more glass packaging than younger generations, who generally expect less glass to be used across the food and beverage industry. Price and availability – both cited by a third of consumers – are the main barriers to buying glass-packed products.
But younger generations are also more likely to find glass packaging to be ‘a trendier option’, and see glass as the best packaging option for preserving quality and taste.
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