Circular economy

Paper packaging


ARA collects more than 600,000 tonnes of paper (packaging) each year. Of this, business and industry account for roughly two-thirds, and households and SMEs account for the remaining third. Paper packaging from households and small businesses is collected together with other paper products (e.g. newspapers, journals, or other print products).

Around 1.4 million colour-coded (red) containers are available for this purpose in Austria. The bins are placed in designated public areas or directly at the doorstep. We work in cooperation with city and municipal governments as well as waste management associations and carry the cost of the infrastructure and collection of paper packaging.


The paper packaging collected by ARA is recycled into new raw material, which can be used in almost all types of paper products thanks to numerous technological advancements. This way, all paper waste collected in Austria is made into new paper products.

What happens next?

Waste paper is used above all in the production of sanitary paper and newsprint as well as primary products for the packaging industry. In Austria, packaging made of paper, cardboard, paperboard and corrugated board is made mainly, and for some types of packaging almost entirely, of waste paper.

Paper can be recycled more than once, but its quality deteriorates each time. Paper fibres can be recycled around six times before they are eliminated from the production process together with contaminated fibres and ink and dye residue.


Did you know that …

  • paper fibres can be recycled around six times?
  • on average one wheelie bin for paper is available for every six Austrian residents?