Scottish recycling campaign picks up global award

A recycling campaign aimed at persuading the public to recycle more - without throwing the wrong materials in the wrong containers - has won an international industry award.

The Waste Aware Scotland campaign uses the simple strapline ‘Everything here…can go in here’ and uses photos of specific, frequently purchased products to provide guidance on what can go in each recycling bin.

Images include quintessentially Scottish products like a can of Irn Bru or a copy of the Scotsman, as well as leading brands that would have immediate recognition throughout the UK, such as a Heinz baked bean tin or an edition of the Radio Times.

The thinking behind the campaign is that providing specific examples of what can be recycled gives people a clearer idea than generic descriptions, and leads to lower levels of contamination.

The campaign has already been adopted by 27 Scottish local authorities and is also viewed as a key part of helping achieve the wider vision of a Zero Waste Scotland.

It won the International Solid Waste Association’s 2009 Communication Award and has been endorsed by both the Scottish and British Retail Consortium, with a potential to roll it out to other areas of the UK.

Scottish Environment Secretary, Richard Lochhead said: “This is another example of how Scotland is leading the way on waste on a European platform.

“Waste Aware Scotland should be proud of this accolade and I hope this inspires all local authorities and other countries to explore innovative ways to tackle this global problem.”

Dr Nicki Souter, Waste Aware Scotland added: “The new branding approach is an excellent example of Scotland leading the way in devising innovative and creative ways of engaging the public with the wider recycling effort.

“It’s also the first campaign of its kind to bring together local authorities and leading retailers, joined together in achieving the vision of a Zero Waste Scotland.”

“With over 80 per cent of the Scottish public now recycling in some way, the challenge is to widen the amount of materials people recycle and our new branding will help by clearly identifying which products can be recycled and what’s more, how to do it.

“The new brand approach marks a huge step forward in further normalising recycling behaviour across Scotland.”

Sam Bond

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