WRAP lays out 2025 targets for waste-free world

Resources charity WRAP has said a blueprint it has published for a “waste-free world by 2025”, is “one of the most important publications” in its 20 year history.

Published recently after being circulated among stakeholders, the plan outlines the resources charity’s “vision”, and sets out a plan on how it intends achieve this.  It covers topics such as food waste, plastics and textiles, as well as carbon emissions and general circular economy goals.

Marcus Gover, CEO of WRAP, said:  “I’m really proud of Our plan for a sustainable planet, which is one of the most important publications in our 20-year history and very timely, with COP26 approaching.

“Our aim is to go beyond Net Zero and become Net Positive. To turn back the Earth Overshoot clock and encourage green growth and circularity in all we do, and all our partners do.”

The document confirms WRAP’s positioning as a charity and non-governmental organisation (NGO) on a global scale.  The blueprint declares: “We are excited about a future where businesses, governments, charities and people work together.” There is no mention of local authorities in the document with concentration on material streams and the international arena.

On its aspirations, WRAP says that by 2025, it will help the food sector increase contributions to net zero, ensure the UK is on a trajectory to halve food waste by 2030 and enable large food businesses and their suppliers to report their food waste by 2023.

Other pledges include working with the European Union, G20 & Commonwealth countries to develop and implement food waste reduction policies and support partners to deliver effective citizen behaviour change campaigns that reduce food waste.

WRAP said that through the Courtauld Commitment it has has helped the UK reduce food waste and the greenhouse gas emissions associated with food and drink by 7% per person from 2015-2018.

By 2025, WRAP says the Plastics Pact will ensure  100% of plastic packaging  is recyclable or compostable, and achieve a 70% recycling or composting rate.

Also, it said 100% of “unnecessary single use packaging” will be removed, and an average recycled content of 30% will be in plastic packaging.

Between 2018 and 2020, WRAP says the Plastics Pact removed the equivalent of 1.5 billion non-recyclable black plastic trays from supermarket shelves, reduced problematic and unnecessary plastic packaging sold by 40% and announced investment of over £100 million in new factories delivering 240,000 tonnes per year of recycled plastic to meet the demand for recycled content.

WRAP added that consumption of clothing has seen rapid growth globally – increasing  by 60-100% in the last 15 years. In addition, the number of times each item of clothing is worn before being discarded is “significantly reducing”.

It said that by 2025, it will develop new policies to tackle unwanted textiles, and said it will “influence circular fashion globally” by developing a “high-achieving voluntary agreement model for clothing and textiles”. WRAP added it will also ensure “this model is taken up in at least seven countries worldwide”.

Circular economy
Mr Gover added that in order to deliver on the  “ambitious aims”, WRAP needs to accelerate the move towards a sustainable, resource-efficient circular economy.

“We need to increase the amount of materials we re-use and recycle back into the economy, and end our reliance on virgin materials. The resource sector has a key role to play in making this happen,” he said.

Mr Glover added “We want more consistency in household collections, more separate food waste collections and more businesses recycling. We’ll work with partners to embed policies and practices that drive forward a more circular economy, but we need your help to bring this vision into practice whether as a local authority talking to residents about recycling, or a waste contractor designing collection schemes”.

Useful links
WRAP’s ‘plan for a sustainable planet’ can be seen in full here