Will MPs legislate to end packaging waste? 

Written by

Tom Gosschalk


Will MPs legislate to end packaging waste?  

Cavendish has commissioned YouGov to conduct a survey of MPs and the public about their views on packaging waste, and particularly on their appetite for intervention to curb its use.

The UK produces 12.7 million tonnes of packaging waste each year, and while the majority of packaging made of metal, glass and carboard and paper is recycled – around 70% – the amount of plastic waste that is recycled is sitting stubbornly at 44%.

We wanted to understand MPs’ and the public’s appetite for greater intervention, either through increased taxation, or banning certain materials to reduce the consumption of certain types of packaging.

The polling found that majority of MPs are against the Government intervening – either through taxes, or a ban – to reduce the amount of packaging used by their constituents. This, however, is in stark contrast to the public, who, in most cases would support measures to reduce packaging waste.

Under half (49%) of MPs support intervention to tackle single-use plastic packaging compared to over two-thirds (68%) of the public.

Just over a quarter (27%) of MPs support intervention on single-use cardboard packaging compared to over half (52%) of the public.

Less than a quarter (22%) of MP support intervention to curb the use of single-use metal packaging compared to almost half (49%) of the public.

16% of MPs support intervention on single-use glass packaging compared to almost two-fifths (39%) of the public.

The polling has also revealed clear dividing lines between the Conservatives and Labour. Unsurprisingly, Labour MPs are much more in favour of greater intervention to reduce packaging waste.

Labour MPs are far more supportive (72%) than Conservative MPs (29%) on intervening to reduce the use of single-use plastic. However, the majority of Labour MPs do not support increased intervention to reduce the use of single-use cardboard (39%), metal (19%) and glass packaging (16%).

To discuss the polling in more detail, or what it might mean for your organisation, email tom.gosschalk@cavendishconsulting.com


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