Catalysing a switch to a circular economy through plastic waste prevention

The challenge

49 million tons of plastic were used in the EU in 2015 for packaging, building and construction, automotive, or electronics. Currently, less than 40 per cent of plastics are recycled, more than 30 per cent are incinerated for energy recovery and the remaining are landfilled. The quality of recycled plastics is increasing – however, the overall uptake of recycled plastics remains low. Only 6 per cent of new plastic materials come from recycling; 95 per cent of the potential economic value in plastic packaging currently goes to waste. Failure to recycle costs the European economy 105 billion euros each year. eCircular aims to tackle this issue, enhancing plastic waste prevention by developing and supporting digital innovations.


What we do

The eCircular Flagship programme will accelerate the circularity of plastic-based material systems and dematerialisation of plastic demand, with the vision of a reaching a carbon-neutral material system by 2050. The Flagship thrives for radical digital innovations for waste prevention and their up-scaling. Digital technologies foster traceability of materials and products, allow for accurate information flows on product and material qualities and availability, reducing the fragmentation of knowledge and regulation. Market transparency can be improved, search costs reduced and effectiveness processes can be enhanced. This digital transformation can enable a quicker transition towards plastic waste reduction and prevention.

eCircular will promote smart manufacturing solutions, advanced eco-design approaches, new business models and alternative consumption patterns. Advanced policies and industry standards will be explored to scale-up innovative solutions.


What we offer

We enable transition pathways towards circular economy and decarbonisation, with a strategic and long-term perspective. Dematerialisation and resource efficiency are the final goals with huge societal, economic and environmental value.

eCircular seeks to strongly contribute to the European strategy for plastics in a circular economy. It gathers and unites the relevant actors on a powerful platform to overcome major barriers, different knowledge bases and priorities. It will create shared targets and priorities, as well as commitment and awareness for business, academia and politicians.

We will explore, foster and evaluate instruments to improve waste prevention in the plastics cycle and circularity itself. The Flagship endorses new business models and businesses in this area.


Join us

Whether you are a business, a public authority, development agency, trade association or from academia or a circular economy oriented NGO, eCircular looks forward to working with you on innovative plastic prevention solutions.
For more information please contact us at


Consortium Partners

Sustainable Production Systems
Calls for Proposals