RezeroLab Data

Generation and selective collection of lightweight packaging waste

Data from Europe

Proper waste management plays a key role in the development of the circular economy.

The generation of packaging waste is affected both by consumer behavior and by producers’ own production and distribution strategies. In addition, much of this packaging is made of plastic, generating waste that is difficult to recycle and potentially hazardous to the environment and human health.

It is therefore necessary to implement more stringent measures to reduce packaging waste and to promote improved recycling and recovery.

Evolution of the amount of lightweight packaging waste, according to its material, generated per capita in the EU, as well as its amount per capita collected separately


The total amount of packaging waste generated per capita in the EU has increased by 22.5% between 2010 and 2021.
At the same time, the amount of separately collected packaging waste has grown by 25.7% in the same period.

Regarding the materials of the packaging waste, in 2021 40.3% by weight was made of paper and cardboard, 19.0% of plastic (taking into account that it is a material with a very low density), 18.5% of glass, 17.1% of wood and 4.9% of metal.