Half of all UK councils now collect beverage cartons from the kerbside for recycling, new figures from the Alliance for Beverage Cartons & the Environment (ACE) UK have revealed.

The 50% recycling rate, which represents a 12-fold increase on 2006 levels when just 4% of local councils offered kerbside recycling, was reached when Ceredigion County Council became the 203rd local authority out of 406 nationally to offer the service.

The figure is also up from 40% in 2012.

Each year, approximately 60,000 tonnes of paper-based cartons are used in the UK to package milk, fruit juice and food products equating to about 2.3kg per household.

ACE UK expects the number of councils offering the service to rise further when the UK’s only dedicated beverage carton reprocessing facility for cartons opens at the Sonoco Alcore paper mill near Halifax, West Yorkshire, later this year.

Linda Crichton, head of collections and quality programme at Wrap, described the 50% kerbside collection figure as a “real milestone” that “bodes well for the future of carton recycling”.