The Swiss recycle four in five of the plastic bottles they use, a record high, according to a new study.
Research by the Swiss PET Recycling Association showed that 83 per cent of such bottles - an 11 per cent increase - were recycled in 1999, making the country the European leader in this form of resource-conservation.
The Swiss are also buying more drinks in PET bottles. 25,000 tonnes were purchased last year, an increase of seven per cent on 1998.
The association said the reason for the successful increase was the rise in the number of PET recycling bins spread around the country. There are now almost 14,000 of them, many conveniently placed outside the entrance to supermarkets, their number having risen 15 per cent in 1999.
The PET acronym stands for polyethylene terephthalate, a synthetic resin that is the most common material used to manufacture plastic drink bottles.
In August, a new PET reprocessing factory will be opened in Frauenfeld in canton Thurgau. It will transform the PET from old bottles into new ones.
swissinfo with agencies