Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation

The National Retail Association today applauds the Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation (APCO) on its release of the Australasian Recycling Label Consumer Insights Report 2021.

The report found that 76% of Australians think that recycling is the most positive thing they can do for the environment and that the first place they turn to for accurate information about how to recycle right is the labelling on their product packaging (51%).

The key takeaway for retailers and brand owners is that consumers care about recycling and the Australasian Recycling Label (ARL) Program is helping them develop positive recycling behaviours.

The report shows that awareness of the ARL has grown significantly (up by 16% year on year).

  • Awareness is highest among younger Australians
    • 82% 16 – 24-year-olds
    • 79% 25 – 34-year-olds
    • 78% 35 – 44-year-olds
  • One in five Australians indicated that they would recycle a lot more if the ARL was on their product packaging
  • Three quarters want to see the label on every item of packaging.

Brooke Donnelly, APCO CEO, says: “Everyone, including industry, government and consumers, is vital to creating cleaner waste streams in Australia, while understanding attitudes and beliefs is crucial to getting everyone to recycle more and to recycle better.”

Since the launch of the label in September 2018, more than 500 organisations have joined the ARL Program and is widely recognised in the Australian Government’s National Plastics Plan and highlighted by the UN Environment Programme as a best practice example of consumer labelling.  Tens of thousands of products are already carrying the label in market and the National Retail Association urges Australian businesses to get involved.




The National Retail Association is a member of APCO and is extensively involved in sustainability initiatives, including lightweight plastic bags and other single-use plastics bans across all jurisdictions. We represent retailer perspectives and ultimately encourage national consistency to prevent negative impacts and confusion. 

Retailers seeking more information, clarification or personalised advice on how to successfully manage sustainability initiatives should contact the NRA Policy team at