From January 2023, all coffee capsules will be allowed in the blue PMD bin bag, as a recycling system for them has now been worked out after years of research.
While some consumers return their used coffee capsules to the producer, many are simply thrown away even though they still contain many valuable materials such as aluminium, polypropylene and other plastics that can be reused.
"These are important materials that we very much want to bring into the recycling chain," Fost Plus, the company behind the blue PMD bin bags, told Belga News Agency. "By collecting them with the blue bag, this is possible."
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The aluminium capsules, which were launched by the well-known coffee company Nespresso in the early 1990s, were criticised for being harmful to the environment. In 2011, the brand started its own collection programme for used capsules, currently collecting 33% of them.
After years of research, Fost Plus has now worked out a recycling system in collaboration with Nespresso, whose competitors have also joined, De Standaard reports.
In the first year, Fost Plus is counting on collecting around 4,500 tonnes of capsules. The PMD centres will be adapted to sort out the capsules, after which they will be recycled by a German and Dutch partner.