The battle to reduce Europe’s plastic waste could become a quarter of a billion dollars more expensive every year as the cost of recycled plastic soars.

In recent months, the price of recycled plastic flakes, used to make goods from soft drink bottles to glitter, has become more expensive than virgin plastic for the first time.

For years the cost of making plastic products from recycled flakes was cheaper than relying on virgin plastics made using fossil fuels, meaning the sustainable option was an economic option too.

But according to experts it is now cheaper for major manufacturers to use new plastic.

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(Photo credit: Martin Bernetti/AFP/Getty Images)