The non-profit, environmental education company, Wastebuster, has re-iterated its ongoing work with children’s magazines publishers and companies to ‘build a new recycling infrastructure’ for hard to recycle plastic toys, called Recycle to Read.
Following news this week that the supermarket chain, Waitrose is to put a ban on children’s magazines offering ‘pointless plastic’ toys as purchase incentives, the organisation has been quick to underline the ongoing efforts it has in place to promote waste reduction across the publishing space.
Free plastic toys used as covermounts for popular children’s magazines have for a long time been a focus of campaigners in the fight to reduce the levels of plastic waste and hard-to-recycle toys finding their way to landfill. Waitrose is the first of the major grocers to implement a ban on the sale of magazines featuring ‘unnecessary plastic’, giving publishers a lead time of eight weeks until the rule is enforced in full.
The retailer has stated that craft items and those that are designed to be used multiple times, such as colouring pens and pencils, and collectable models will not be included in the ban.
In a statement issued in the wake of the news, Wastebuster’s founder, Katy Newham said: “We have been working with children’s magazine publishers for the last two years on a sustainable solution for their products.
“The Recycle to Read programme has been developed by a not-for-profit environmental education and recycling campaign platform, Wastebuster and The Pod in response to the call to action from the publishers.”
The programme itself will aim to “build a new recycling infrastructure for hard to recycle plastic toys” which is collectively funded by the industry as it looks to “promote waste reduction, reuse, and recycling” through an education campaign that will involve UK schools and local communities.
Participating schools and communities will be rewarded with books and reading materials to improve children’s literacy.
“In alignment with the UN Sustainable Development Goals, Recycle to Read is a collective impact initiative between industry, government, and consumers to promote responsible consumption and production,” said Newnham. “That will unlock considerable social, economic, and environmental benefits for the societies in which it operates.
“The long-term aim of the programme is to provide research to industry to support the transition to more sustainable product design and circularity in the UK, with a view to global replication.”
For more details visit www.recycletoread.org