AF&PA reports paper recycling rate reaches 68.1 percent
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AF&PA reports paper recycling rate reaches 68.1 percent

The recovered paper market rebounded after China’s import restrictions on recovered products.

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The American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA), Washington, announced that 68.1 percent of paper consumed in the United States was recovered for recycling in 2018. The recovered paper market rebounded after China’s import restrictions on recovered products caused the rate to dip in 2017. 

“U.S. paper recovery for recycling is successful because it is voluntary and market driven,” says AF&PA President and CEO Donna Harman. “Industry and consumer commitment to increasing the quantity and quality of paper recovered for recycling contributed to this record-high rate.”

“Markets for recovered paper are complex, efficient and extremely resilient and our industry is increasing the use of recovered paper to make new products. The U.S. paper recovery for recycling rate has now met or exceeded 63 percent for the past decade,” says AF&PA Board Chairman and Greif Inc. President and CEO Pete Watson. “We thank everyone who makes the effort to recycle paper for contributing to this success.”

As part of its Better Practices, Better Planet 2020 sustainability initiative, the AF&PA along with the industry aim to exceed 70 percent paper recovery for recycling by 2020. More U.S. paper recovery for recycling rate statistics are available online at www.paperrecycles.org/statistics