Información Técnica

Renato Paquet

In 2021, Brazil recycled 98.7% of its aluminum beverage cans, equivalent to about 33 billion units. To further improve the aluminum can recycling production chain, the Brazilian Aluminum Association (ABAL) and the Aluminum Can Manufacturers Association (Abralatas) have decided to launch Recicla Latas.

This entity was created to coordinate projects and measures for the recycling of aluminum beverage cans in Brazil. Mundolatas interviews the organization’s executive secretary, Renato Paquet.

ML- In July 2021, Recicla Latas started its work. What progress has your organization made?

In 2021, we conducted a training course on waste management with a circular economy approach for more than 100 environmental managers from 54 municipalities that make up the state of Ceará and conducted two national environmental education campaigns, reaching millions of people throughout Brazil addressing the contents of conscious consumption and proper waste disposal.

ML- You are an environmentalist graduated from UFRJ, ambassador of Conscious Capitalism in Brazil, CEO of Cleantechs of the Brazilian Association of Startups, and founder of a cleantech called Polen, which neutralizes the impact of packaging through blockchain to meet reverse logistics, sells recyclable material for the manufacture of recycled packaging, and acts in the restructuring of cooperatives. Tell us about this project….

Polen was born with this intention, that of transforming what is waste into an opportunity for companies in all sectors. With the strength that reverse logistics of packaging in general has been gaining in recent years, the demand within this market has increased a lot, which has made us enter territories where cooperatives are not as well structured as in the capital and big cities.

ML- What challenges have we overcome and should be put in place to improve recycling and further promote sustainability?

The biggest challenge for the growth of the recycling rate in the country, which, by the way, has not had a practical increase in the last 10 years, lies in the expansion of the selective collection agenda to be carried out by the municipalities.

To have a notion, more than 90% of the post-consumer materials that are recycled today in the country come from cooperatives of recyclable material collectors, if the selective collection does not grow, the collector does not have material to work with and the rate stagnates.

We have made great progress in recent years with the Legal Framework for Sanitation and the National Solid Waste Plan (PLANARES). Both have the potential to transform recycling in the country. More than 40% of Brazilian waste goes to landfills, which are a disaster and should also be an embarrassment to the citizens of the municipalities that dispose of it so inadequately.

ML- Could you tell us about some of the projects supported by Recicla Latas in this area?

In addition to the training courses for public administrators mentioned above, Recicla Latas has developed the Good Practices Guide for cooperatives and small and medium-sized recyclers. In 2022, we are running two campaigns, one on conscious consumption and one on proper disposal, for all of Brazil and we are having great reach and engagement.

ML- What other achievements have been made in the field of recyclability and what challenges does the industry face in the coming years?

Aluminum beverage cans are 100% recyclable and 98.7% of the cans manufactured were recycled in 2021. There are more than 800,000 solid waste collectors who play a fundamental role within an organized reverse logistics system, with 36 collection centers distributed in 19 states, 49 recycling plants in 8 states and 26 factories in 13 Brazilian states.


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