A body bringing together a range of municipalities across Europe has set out its principles that it hopes will help businesses reduce waste.
It wants to see products designed and managed to reduce the volume and toxicity of waste materials, conserve and recover all resources and not burn or bury them.
So far municipalities in Spain, Italy and Romania have signed up to these principles and it is hoped others across Europe will join them.
One of the key ideas outlined in its document Introducing Zero Waste Europe: the main principles is that there needs to be a culture change from linear production, consumption and disposal to a society that reduces material and energy use to become a zero waste society.
The document also wants waste prevention targets to be introduced among EU Member States, the separate collection of various recyclable materials, food and garden waste, and residual waste.
It also calls for products that are designed to be long-lasting and repairable, reduction of packaging and redesign of products that cannot be composted, reused or recycled, as well as reusing parts and materials in line with a circular economy.
Zero Waste Europe believes that price incentives should be introduced to drive behaviour change including penalties for excessive generation of waste.