Action Alliance for Recycling Beverage Cartons (AARC) is a first-of-its-kind recycling initiative. 10 industry leaders in the field of juices, dairy, pharma, liquor and packaging have come together to form and kick-start AARC to strengthen the end-to-end waste management ecosystem by engaging with all stakeholders across the value chain. The alliance aims to increase recycling of used cartons from approximately 30% today to 60% by 2025.

Commenting on the genesis of the alliance, Kandarp Singh, Managing Director, Tetra Pak and Chairman of AARC, said “This is the first time ever that an initiative of this nature and scale has been launched. It is a strong platform that brings the industry together with one common mission – of radically transforming the recycling landscape and positively impacting millions engaged in the waste management. We are very grateful for the support that we have received from the industry.”

Applauding the launch of AARC, C K Mishra, Secretary, Ministry of Environment Forest & Climate Change said, “Waste management is a burning issue that is best addressed through effective policy, strong implementation and a partnership approach for the long-term good of all. The Government recently revamped the Waste Management Rules and introduced the principle of Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR). We are extremely happy to see the formation of AARC – a collaboration between industry, the waste trade, NGOs and civic society and their commitment to fulfil their mandate as responsible producers.”

Talking about the role of Tetra Pak, Kandarp Singh added, “For us, sustainability is an integral part of our brand promise – Protects What’s Good. Our cartons are fully recyclable and primarily made of paper, with 100% of the paperboard sourced from FSC certified and other controlled sources. Over the last 15 years, Tetra Pak has successfully built up the used cartons recycling ecosystem from scratch. Our commitment to the cause has been unwavering and despite many challenges, 1 out of 3 used cartons are recycled today. AARC welcomes the Government’s recent waste management reforms and now with the beverage carton industry pooling its resources together, we will work actively to step up recycling in the years to come.”

Commander Amitabha Ray, Chairman of Schreiber Dynamix Dairies and Vice Chairman of AARC added “Industry leaders have recognized the need for an organization like AARC, as a collaborative effort to make a big impact. AARC will provide its member organizations the right platform to share responsibilities and bring maximum efficiencies to create a win-win for all: collection partners will collect more used cartons which will provide enhanced livelihoods for waste pickers; recyclers will get greater access to a valuable resource; and society will benefit by having a cleaner environment. Over the next few months, we will work together to design and implement a road-map including projects, resources, partners and other finer details.”