Ardagh Glass Packaging-Europe (AGP-Europe) has agreed to buy Swedish glass recycler Svensk Glasåtervinning (SGÅ).

SGÅ has collected and recycled glass packaging throughout Sweden for more than 30 years and delivers the country’s 90% glass recycling rate.

A recent change in regulation of post-consumer glass collection from the start of 2024 requires Swedish municipalities to take over the role of collection and introduce property-based glass collection.

AGP-Europe’s purchase of SGÅ is driven by a commitment to protect Sweden’s circular glass recycling system, in light of the new regulation.

The recycling system is vital to secure an ongoing supply of high-quality glass cullet.

The purchase also ensures that glass collected in Sweden is retained within the country for use in glass packaging production and is not exported for processing outside Sweden for other industry applications.

Martin Petersson, CEO AGP-Europe, said: “Buying SGÅ is the perfect complement to our glass production in Sweden.

"It will protect glass recycling and ensure we continue to close the glass loop, securing the supply of recycled glass cullet – one of our most important raw materials for lower-carbon glass packaging.”

Magnus Andersson, CEO SGÅ added: “Ardagh knows and understands the glass industry, including glass recycling, and as a result, the glass industry in Sweden is fully supportive of the new ownership.

"We look forward to our continuing work with Ardagh to develop long-term goals for the company, and to maintain our position as a world-class glass recycler.”

AGP-Europe is one of five companies who have been part owners of SGÅ since it was founded in 1986.

By buying the shares of the other four co-owners, it will become the sole owner. SGÅ will retain its name and operating model, focusing on receiving and recycling glass packaging waste, and selling glass cullet.

The Swedish Brewery Association is one of the co-owners selling its shares to AGP-Europe. CEO Anna-Karin Fondberg said: “We, along with the other co-owners, are very pleased to sell to AGP-Europe.

"They have been crucial for the development of high-quality glass with a high ratio of recycled glass cullet.

"The next step is very important for the Swedish food and beverage sector to secure the supply of sustainable glass packaging with a relatively low CO2 footprint.”

With this purchase, a circle of almost 40 years has been closed: SGÅ was founded in 1986 by a company called PLM who, at that time, owned two glassworks in Sweden – one of which was in Limmared.

In 2007, the Limmared glassworks was sold to Ardagh Group, where glass packaging continues to be produced.

The deal is expected to be completed in the second quarter of this year.