Container Recycling Institute Releases its Beverage Market Data Analysis: 215 Billion Plastic, Glass and Aluminum Beverage Bottles and Cans Sold in the U.S. 2006; 66% Were not Recycled

Contact:  Betty McLaughlin:  202 263 0999


Container Recycling Institute Releases its Beverage Market Data Analysis:
215 Billion Plastic, Glass and Aluminum Beverage Bottles and Cans Sold in the U.S. 2006; 66% Were not Recycled

Glastonbury, CT, December 29 , 2008 – The Container Recycling Institute today issued its “Beverage Market Data Analysis” (BMDA) a comprehensive look at beverage sales, and beverage container recycling and wasting in all fifty states and the U.S. as a whole. Since the beginning of CRI’s analysis in 2000 the U.S. has seen significant growth in beverage container packaging primarily as a result of the rapid growth of the plastic container. At the same time, beverage container recycling rates stagnated. The result is that the beverage container wasting rate has grown 5 % since 2000 to 66%. Recycling beverage containers is good for the environment and saves energy.


“U.S. beverage container recycling rate of 34% is unacceptable. The aluminum can industry recently announced a 75% recycling goal while the glass container industry announced a 50% goal. There is a huge opportunity to significantly increase beverage container recycling rates and use this recycled material to make new beverage containers ” said Scott Trundle, Board Chairman of CRI.

“As corporate and legislative leaders look to address energy and climate change, all industrial systems are being examined and evaluated for their energy use and carbon footprint,” said Betty McLaughlin, Executive Director of CRI.  “Using recycled materials in place of virgin materials conserves energy and reduces air emissions. Avoiding energy use is like finding new clean fuel sources.”

“While some states and communities are doing a good job at recycling beverage containers, CRI’s report reveals that there are large quantities of valuable containers that are not yet being recovered in the United States. Processors and end users are embracing collection systems that increase the recovery and preserve the quality of these valuable containers so we can maximize reuse,” said Tex Corley, President of Strategic Materials, the country’s largest recycled glass processor and CRI’s incoming board Chairman.


CRI compiles the Beverage Market Data Analysis to show industry leaders, recycling professionals and advocates, and elected officials the extent of recycling opportunities associated with used glass, plastic and aluminum beverage containers. Additionally, the BMDA calculates nationwide and state-by-state figures for energy savings and tons of greenhouse gas emissions that could be avoided by recycling these containers


The Beverage Market Data Analysis for the United States and the summary of conclusions can be obtained free of charge by contacting the Container Recycling Institute at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Individual state BMDAs are also available. The BMDA tracks U.S. sales of carbonated beverages; non-carbonated, non-alcoholic beverages, and wine and spirits. The analysis, which consists of dozens of sales, packaging and recycling spread sheets categorized by beverage and packaging material type uses industry-reported data indexed to populations.  A 15 page summary, “Wasting and Recycling Trends: Conclusions from CRI’s 2008 Beverage Market Data Analysis” accompanies the BMDA.

Founded in 1991, the Container Recycling Institute is a nonprofit research and public education organization studying alternatives for reducing container and packaging waste.  CRI compiles data on generation, recovery and disposal of beverage containers, researches container and packaging reuse and recycling options, and serves as the clearinghouse for information on beverage container deposit systems.  CRI educates policy makers, government officials and the general public about the societal and environmental impacts of the production and disposal of one-way beverage containers.



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