Bristol nappy recycling - we've saved nearly 15,000 used nappies from landfill

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baby with piles of nappies

Holy poops, we’ve prevented nearly 15,000 used nappies from ending up in landfill! Three months into our launch of England’s first nappy recycling trial in Bristol, we’re proud to report that almost 3000kg of nappy and hygiene product waste has been collected from Bristol parents and a nursery group.

This means that the equivalent of around 14,400 nappies have been diverted from landfill and instead turned into useful materials such as road surfaces notice boards, panelling, insulation under laminate flooring and other insulation.

nappy cycle van

The trial - supported in an awareness drive by Asda - kicked off at beginning of July and involves the free home collection, provided by Natural UK, of nappies and other hygiene items. They are then recycled in Wales by our partner NappiCycle.  

What parents think

We spoke to a couple of mums who signed up for the trial and are enjoying having their babies’ nappies recycled.

Jessi mum of one said: “The trial has been very easy so far; you just keep your nappies and pop them in the bin bag provided. I have had to change very little, and I get to feel good about helping the planet. I would love to continue having my nappies recycled after the trial.”

Whilst another, Molly a mum of one, added: “Knowing that our waste is being recycled is fantastic as we have had such guilt about using nappies with the current climate crisis. We are so thankful that we have been able to take part and hope it continues."

nappies in landfill

Pura believes that nappy recycling is the best solution to the 8 million disposable nappies that are thrown into landfill daily in the UK, each one taking hundreds of years to degrade – long outliving the babies they are used on.

The technology for nappy recycling already exists! Many parents in Wales already enjoy a free, local authority provided nappy collection and recycling service, with the nappy waste processed by NappiCycle which recycles 40 million used nappies in Wales each year. Unfortunately, the free service is only available in Wales at the moment.

The findings of the trial will be used to inform conversations with DEFRA and local authorities throughout the UK about the feasibility and benefits of nappy cycling.

Watch this space.

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