Over the past 11 years, packaging waste among the EU 15 going to final disposal has fallen by 43 per cent.
The analysis of data by packaging and environmental body Europen shows that packaging waste growth in the EU 15 has decoupled from GDP growth.
Europen managing director Julian Carroll said: “The data supports our view that the 1994 Directive on Packaging and Packaging Waste is clearly one of the most successful pieces of EU environmental legislation.”
The EU directive set a 2008 recycling target of 55 per cent to be reached by 12 member states with the remainder newer states having to reach the target between 2011 and 2015. By 2008, three of the remaining countries had met the target and the rest were close to it.