Consultation response delayed for consistency in household and business recycling in England!

A second consultation on increasing the consistency of recycling that can be collected at kerbside in England was held by DEFRA two years ago from May 2021 – June 2021. Within this consultation, DEFRA asked for views on policy proposals on the materials included in each recyclable waste stream, exemptions, statutory guidance and transition timelines for local authorities and businesses.

DEFRA reported that household recycling rates in England have increased from 11% in 2001 to 45.5% in 2019/2020, however since 2015 the rate of increase in recycling has slowed. By reforming household and non-household municipal (business) collections in England, councils could be required to collect six types of waste separately, including glass, metals, plastics, paper and card, food waste, and garden waste. Increasing the consistency of materials that can and cannot be recycled from the kerbside in this way will be crucial to reducing confusion for the public, increasing recycling rates, and will help to eliminate avoidable waste by 2050, driving us towards a circular economy.

The government consultation response and announcement of government’s plans for reform has been delayed until after local elections have occurred in May 2023 in England and Northern Ireland. In the weeks leading up to elections, governments, ministers, and civil servants exercise caution in making announcements or decisions that may impact the election campaign, hence the announcement on consistency of recycling reform will be delayed until after elections have taken place.

If you have any questions as we await the response from DEFRA, get in touch with our team on


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