Three-quarters of the drinks cans sold in this country are made from aluminium
Cans can be recycled into all sorts of useful new products - such as wire, airliner body parts, window frames, engine components, trains and bicycles.
It can of course also be recycling into new drinks cans. Recycling aluminium to make new cans gives a 95% energy saving. So it's worth the effort!
Unlike steel cans, they will not stick to a magnet - which is one way of telling them apart. There's also usually a special recycling symbol on the can somewhere.
Foil packaging (take aways, ready meals, pies, some yoghurt lids) and cooking/wrapping aluminium foil is also recyclable - as long as it's clean.
To test if something is made from alumnium you can do the 'scrunch test' - aluminium foil will not spring back when scrunched up.
Plastic coated foil-like materials - like crisp packets and some chocolate wrappers - will spring back. You can't recycle these at the moment.
Where does it go?
Aluminium cans collected from your red boxes are to sent to a reprocessor company called Clearpoint Recycling, based in Harrogate, UK. The cans are then melted down into 'slab' and rolled out in sheets to make aluminium cans again.
Aluminium foil has to be dealt with seperately from aluminium cans when it's recycled - it's made from a slightly different alloy and so goes through a different reprocessing method, but it is still sent to Clearpoint Recycling.
Visit the Aluminium Packaging Recycling Organisation (ALUPRO) website to find out more.
Last updated: Thu 4 July, 2019 @ 12:22