Consumers Overwhelmingly Believe Recycling is Important

New research reveals that Americans continue to think recycling helps
the environment and should be made a priority

DENTON, Texas–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Good news! Americans still believe recycling is important and positively
impacts the environment. These were the findings of a national survey
that included nearly 2,500 U.S. adults, conducted for the Carton
Council of North America
. It showed that 90 percent of respondents
believe recycling is important and people should do what they can to try
and recycle.

To break it down further, more than 6 in 10 (61 percent) believe people
should make recycling a priority. Twenty-nine percent believe people
should do what they can to try to recycle.

“The survey results reiterate what we in the industry have known all
along, that recycling is important and remains a vital part of
ensuring our planet is in the best shape for future generations,” said
Jason Pelz, vice president of recycling projects for the Carton Council
of North America and vice president, environment, Tetra Pak Americas.
“Despite some media coverage last year that questioned the importance of
recycling, American consumers care about recycling and the environment.
It’s within our power as an industry to unite for the common goal of
ensuring every American has access to recycling and is recycling all
that they can.”

Further reinforcing the widespread support for recycling, the survey
also found that 95 percent of consumers believe that if more people
recycled their household containers, it would help the environment.
Additionally, the survey revealed that recycling is very much a cultural
norm in the U.S. Eighty-two percent of respondents said that all or some
of the houses in their neighborhood set out recycling on collection day.

“With the price of oil so low, there has been a lot of discussion about
the short-term economic feasibility of recycling,” said Pelz. “However,
recycling is important not just for the economic benefits but also
because it tackles the issue of resource scarcity that will eventually
impact us all. Additionally, in some communities, recycling addresses
concerns over the lack of landfill space. Recycling is not going away in
this country.”

Results from the survey also reinforced that recycling is seen as a
local issue and using a variety of local communications is most
effective. When asked where they turn for information about their
community, respondents said they would first turn to local media for
information (43 percent), followed closely by friends and family at 36
percent, bill stuffers and newsletters at 29 percent, social media at 21
percent, and events at 20 percent.

“Recycling is about creating good solutions for long-term economic and
environmental health. Knowledge is power, and this research reinforces
that there is demand for recycling,” said Keefe Harrison, executive
director of The Recycling Partnership. “We share a joint mission with
the Carton Council in working to create solutions that engage members
all along the recycling supply chain to increase recycling nationwide.
We also recognize that our job isn’t done, but together with the Carton
Council and our many other partners, we are taking action to deliver
bold results.”

The Carton Council is a sponsor and member of The
Recycling Partnership
board of directors, a national recycling
nonprofit focused on improving recycling in the U.S. The Carton Council
was formed with the goal to increase carton recycling in the U.S. In
2009, just 18 percent of U.S. households could recycle the cartons they
consumed through their local recycling programs. Since then, efforts
have focused on building the infrastructure for aseptic and gable-top
carton recycling, and now 58 percent of U.S. households have access to
carton recycling, a 222 percent increase.


Findings from the research are based on a survey of 2,495 adults
conducted by Research+Data
. The survey included a nationally representative sample of
Americans who reported having access to curbside recycling programs in
their communities, and the results were weighted to correct known
demographic discrepancies. Responses were collected online between Dec.
2 and Dec. 13, 2015.

For more information on the research findings, visit


The Carton Council is composed of four leading carton manufacturers,
Elopak, SIG Combibloc, Evergreen Packaging and Tetra Pak, as well as an
associate member, Weyerhaeuser. Formed in 2009, the Carton Council works
to deliver long-term collaborative solutions in order to divert valuable
cartons from the landfill. Through a united effort, the Carton Council
is committed to building a sustainable infrastructure for carton
recycling nationwide and works toward their continual goal of adding
access to carton recycling throughout the U.S. For more information,


For Carton Council
Sarah Kettenburg, 813-775-6210