The deal will also see the glossies looking at ways to increase the percentage of recycled paper in the magazines themselves, use recycled materials in packaging and gently encourage their readers to recycle more.

Among those that have agreed to take part are big sellers such as Heat, Country Living and lad mag FHM along with specialist titles such as New Scientist, The Economist and New Statesman.

The targets agreed by Government and the Periodical Publishers Association (PPA), representing some 90% of the UK’s publishers, will see 50% of magazines recycled by 2007 with that figure rising to 70% by 2013.

At the moment it is thought that around 40% of magazines are being recycled.

Local Environment Minister Ben Bradshaw said: “I’m delighted: this may well be a voluntary agreement, but it commits the publishing industry to some tough targets and pledges.

“We are determined that producers of products must increasingly take responsibility for their products when they become waste.

“Through this agreement the PPA is playing its part in helping to tackle the UK’s waste problem for which they should be applauded.”

“In addition, this agreement will make an important contribution in helping the UK meet its national targets for recycling and composting household waste.”

Government is hoping the agreement will help the UK meet its targets of recycling or composting 30% of domestic waste by 2010 as well as meeting its obligations to slash the amount of waste going to landfill.

Details of the agreement can be found on the Defra website here.

By Sam Bond

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