The EU average collection of glass packaging for recycling was 80.1% in 2021, according to the latest data from Close the Glass Loop.
Close the Glass Loop aims to reach a post-consumer glass container collection target of 90% by 2030, and to ensure that this is recycled back into the container glass production loop.
The vast majority of the almost 12 million tonnes collected goes back to remelt new bottles and jars.
According to the study on the “Performance of Packaging Glass Recycling in Europe”, 91% of glass packaging waste effectively recycled is recycled back into bottles and jars.
Adeline Farrelly, Secretary General of FEVE said: “Separate collection is the most important step to increase glass recycling and 17 EU countries are on track to meet their 2025 recycling targets.
“However, the European Commission also recently identified 10 Member States at risk of not meeting their targets.
"This confirms the importance of Close the Glass Loop to strengthen collaboration along the glass packaging value chain to improve collection infrastructure, recycling processes and consumer communications.
“There is still a way to go to ensure that 90% of glass packaging is collected to be recycled by 2030 all across Europe and we must further trigger mobilisation of Close the Glass Loop actions on national level.”
Portugal is one of these 10 EU countries identified by the European Commission as unlikely to reach the 2025 EU glass recycling target.
The launch last year of Vidro+, a Close the Glass Loop national action programme in Portugal, is a strong commitment from the glass packaging value chain to collaborate with government entities, universities and research centres, associations and non-governmental organisations to accelerate glass collection and recycling in Portugal.
Tiago Moreira da Silva, Coordinator Vidro+, said: “With 54.4% collection for recycling rate in 2021, Portugal is below the EU average but also one of the EU Member States with the most potential for collecting and recycling glass packaging.
“It is also the European country with the highest glass production per capita, almost four times higher than its consumption needs, making it critical to improve collection of glass packaging to meet the need for recycled glass.”