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Inventing a new US aerosol recycling habit

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Gary Okey, executive vice-president of Recycle Aerosol, explains the challenges facing widespread aerosol recycling in the US.

Aerosol recycling is not a new topic for the aerosol industry. In the past decade it has moved steadily from ‘one of many’ important challenges to face our industry to the most important one, according to many. This stems from an increasing consumer preference for sustainable packaging and their expectation that brand owners and retailers should provide leadership in making it happen. While we have now largely recognised the challenge (not enough recycling), we have not yet overcome it. Others have sufficiently reflected on what we have accomplished and created a strategy for the future. I decided to offer some balance by spotlighting the status of the aerosol recycling challenge and the cost of inadequately confronting the current trajectory. It could be argued that we are currently losing ground on this challenge, not because we have not mounted an effort, but because the adversarial forces and obstacles have become greater during the past few years.

Negative pressures
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