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Packaging includes paper, plastic, glass, steel and aluminium that are used to preserve foodstuffs and protect other consumer goods from damage. Between 1994 and 2002 about 83 kg of packaging was landfilled per person per year, although an increasing amount of packaging was also recovered every year during this time.
By weight, New Zealanders send more paper packaging to landfill than they do plastic, glass, steel and aluminium packaging. By volume, some packaging types take up more space than others.
About 64,000 tonnes of paper and cardboard are landfilled in Canterbury each year. But paper and cardboard is easy to reuse and recycle and can benefit both the environment and the economy.
Collect paper, newspaper, magazines, cardboard and paperboard for recycling.
Buy recycled or recyclable products to support recycling businesses.
As well as recycling your waste, it is important to think about how you can help 'close the loop' on recycling. 'Closing the loop' means that waste materials are continually reused, remanufactured, or recycled. This results in the more efficient use of materials and energy and reduces waste.
As a consumer you can help to close the loop by buying items made of, and packaged in, recycled materials. As demand increases for goods made from recycled materials the amount of materials being recycled will also increase.
Examples of products made from recycled materials:
To find out more about what recycled products are available in New Zealand have a look at the Buy it Back Guide.
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