Wednesday 8 December 2021
Australia’s largest retail body, the Australian Retailers Association (ARA), has welcomed the launch of the Federal Government’s ReMade in Australia campaign, as part of a broader investment in the circular economy through the Recycling Modernisation Fund.
ARA CEO Paul Zahra said Australian consumers are doing the right thing by recycling more and the ReMade in Australia campaign will help establish critical new markets for recycled packaging and products, as we transition to the low-carbon, circular economy.
“There are many ways consumers and retailers can demonstrate their commitment to the environment, but recycling is often most front of mind because it’s something we do daily. It is also a low complexity starting point for businesses and individuals on a broader journey towards deeper environmental commitments,” Mr Zahra said.
“The Remade in Australia campaign will continue to promote the importance of recycling, encouraging the community to recycle more and incentivising greater investment in the local waste, recycling and resource recovery sector.
“More importantly though, the campaign will fast-track the growth of new markets in recycled content, enabling more producers to move away from virgin materials for their packaging and products. These types of measures are critical in the transition to a more circular economy, which will play a key role in the decarbonisation of the retail sector as we highlighted in the recent launch of our Net-zero Roadmap for Australian retailers.”
The ARA’s Net-zero Roadmap sets aspirational emissions-reduction targets for the Australian retail sector between 2030 and 2050. The roadmap outlines the suggested decisions, investments and actions that retailers need to make to achieve net-zero emissions, in five streams of work, or pathways.
One of these pathways includes embracing the circular economy, working with suppliers to produce more with less, and supporting consumers in the transition to more sustainable consumption. To realise this aspirational, the ARA has proposed the mainstream adoption of sustainable and circular packaging by 2030, and circular economy products by 2040.
“Accelerating the move to the circular economy is absolutely critical if our sector is to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. We have a great foundation to build upon with recycling rates on packaging continuing to increase, so what we need to do more is make it easier for consumers to recycle more and develop new markets for more producers to use more recycled content,” Mr Zahra said.
“Sustainability and climate change are the next big disrupters for the retail sector, at home and abroad – and are likely to be the biggest disrupters our business community has ever seen. While some of the steps we need to take on the journey ahead are complex, recycling more and using more recycled content are relatively simple things we can do to reduce environmental impacts today and improve circularity as we transition to the low-carbon economy of the future.”