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The PET Recycling Switzerland (PRS) Association provides a comprehensive information service (in French, German and Italian) on its website, including FAQs, a downloadable presentation, a PET newsflash and campaign materials. A CD-ROM on PET Recycling can also be ordered free of charge.
For information on current recycling volumes see FOEN statistics.
PET stands for polyethylene terephthalate and consists of oxygen, hydrogen and carbon (classified by the federal government as capable of being incinerated without releasing pollutants). PET belongs to the group of synthetic polymers known as polyesters, which are used above all in the textile industry.
Recycling leads to an energy saving of 50%.
The return rate is currently 80%.
The retail price of a beverage in a PET bottle includes a prepaid recycling charge of CHF 0.018.
The PET Recycling Switzerland (PRS) Association uses the prepaid recycling charge to cover the costs of collecting PET (containers, transport and sorting) and of providing information to consumers on the best way of returning PET bottles to collection centres, so as to attain the best possible results in terms of quantity and quality of the recycling.
Among the various PET products, only beverage containers are suitable for recycling. PET bottles containing oil, vinegar, shampoo and other products cannot be recycled, as the degree of soiling is too high.
Blue-and-yellow recycling bins for PET bottles can be found at most retail outlets and in shopping centres.
Throughout Switzerland, there are 10,000 obligated and 20,000 voluntary collection points available in working and leisure areas.
Besides glass, metal packaging (aluminium packaging and food cans) and, in some cases, other domestic waste such as batteries, it is now also possible to deposit PET bottles at more than 1,500 collection points run by different local authorities. PRS has developed a solution to compensate local authorities for these collection activities. Small local authorities lacking any commercial structure are provided, free of charge, with a collection container and bags. Once the bags have been filled, they are also picked up free of charge and transported to the recycling centre. The other local authorities must decide whether the compensation that is being offered per tonne is sufficient and whether or not they wish to provide a PET collection service.
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