Family business keeping plastic beverage kegs out of landfill
25 April 2019


WDS Group and KeyKeg kick-start a closed-loop recycling programme for KeyKegs. Most plastic beverage kegs in the UK are not recycled and often end up in landfill. To overcome this problem, WDS Group have teamed up with OneCircle to create a circular programme which recycles the basic materials from KeyKegs turning them into new, useable KeyKegs.

The programme was launched as a pilot scheme in London and now WDS Group have taken up the baton for the North. WDS Group will collect the used KeyKegs from bars and deliver them to plastic recycling specialist OneCircle, where the KeyKegs are then processed and turned back into KeyKegs .

Lightweight Containers, the company behind KeyKeg, initiated as a packaging producer OneCircle. Together with its customers, beverage distributors and bars, OneCircle is building a community that is eagerly collecting KeyKegs and preparing them for processing. OneCircle, an initiative of the company Lightweight Containers, is responsible for the recycling and transportation of KeyKegs.

WDS Group, a family run wholesale business and distributor in Bury, sees new opportunities with the collection of KeyKegs. Sam Evans, Sales Director: “We estimate that more than 500,000 KeyKegs end up in Manchester alone every year and it is great that we can now use them as raw materials again. It meets a huge need. Many bars and breweries have heard that we are going to process KeyKegs and have spontaneously saved them up. It is clear to them that a lot of plastic ends up in landfill and they want to prevent that from happening. The time has come to work together with packaging producers on closed loops, and OneCircle is leading the way.”

Annemieke Hartman from OneCircle: “We are very pleased to welcome WDS group to the OneCircle community. WDS group is among the leaders in sustainability and together with OneCircle they are expanding this lead. By reusing the raw materials from KeyKegs we lower the CO2 footprint of their beer to the lowest in the industry.”

In England, OneCircle is building a nationwide collection network. Members of the network collect and crush the KeyKegs into bales. OneCircle collects the bales and transports around 10.000 KeyKegs per truckload to the processing plant.

Lightweight Containers is the producer of KeyKeg and UniKeg: the world’s leading one-way beverage kegs. Since it was founded in Den Helder, the Netherlands in 2006, Lightweight Containers has grown into a global market leader. The company serves its customers from warehouses and sales offices worldwide and operates production facilities in the United States, Germany, the United Kingdom and of course the Netherlands.

WDS Group are a dedicated family run team of 20 people offering a distinctive range of over 2500 products to a variety of business across the North West. Founded in 2009 they are consistently improving their unique range by listening to their customers’ needs and keeping them at the heart of everything they do. Aiming to become a leading figure in wholesale, their partnership with Lightweight Containers demonstrates their forward thinking and dynamic approach.

OneCircle is an initiative of Lightweight Containers, started in 2018. The company offers solutions for the recycling of one way kegs worldwide, with the aim of making them completely circular (meaning that all the materials in a keg are used to make new kegs or other high end products). They use new, unique collection methods, networks and technologies. They currently employ 7 people and their activities are expanding rapidly.