Plastic Waste and Recycling
One of the main reasons for developing my reusable food pouches was to help save waste. It really pained me that 10's of millions of pouches were being thrown away each year in the UK alone.
I have always found pouches amazingly helpful for feeding snacks on the go. They are the ultimate convenience food for babies and toddlers but disposing of them responsibly is not easy and it's all too convenient for them to be thrown away.
In an article written in 2018 by The Times newspaper discussing Pouch packaging it was stated that "More than TEN BILLION plastic-aluminium packets containing baby food, pet food and drinks are sold each year in the UK but less than one in 20,000 is recycled, according to analysis of industry data. Two thirds are sent to landfill sites and nearly all the rest are incinerated" Those numbers are likely to have increased dramatically since.
For Baby food pouches alone there is one significant recycling scheme which is funded by Ella’s Kitchen. The scheme was set up to recycle any brand of baby food pouches but according to a spokesman at the company they have "recycled only 1.9 million pouches in seven years (now the total is 3,008,093). The company admitted at the time that this was less than 1 per cent of the pouches it had produced"
The scheme requires individuals or businesses to set themselves up as a collection point for pouches and register themselves. There are lots of collection points throughout the country so it's definitely worth a check on the EllaCycle map to see where you could drop yours off.
To give credit to Ella's Kitchen though. They are the only baby food brand supporting the recycling of ANY BRAND of baby food pouches. They also award 2p for every pouch recycled to charity to encourage consumers to recycle their pouches. The charity is selected by the collection point manager and they can choose to make their location public or private. If you are interested in becoming a collection point, saving waste and raising money for charity then you can find out more and sign up to the scheme here.
If you would like to read the full article from The Times click here
ASDA have now also become a drop off point as part of the Ellacycle scheme. Envelopes are available in 37 selected stores to be filled with upto 15 pouches and these will be delivered to Terracycle.
If you continue to use the shop bought vesions, Please consider the environment and collect up all of your old empties so you can drop off at a collection point near to you. It really is our responsibility to help keep our planet clean for our little ones to enjoy.