Bakers Basco, the membership scheme set up by five of the UK’s largest plant bakers to manage an industry-wide bakery equipment solution, has made national headlines in the Daily Express and Birmingham Mail today, following the culmination of a six month investigation with Reach Plc into organised crime gangs secretly recycling stolen plastic trays across the UK. 

The investigative report published today, entitled ‘Recycle crooks net millions by stealing plastic bread baskets’, reveals how this widespread ‘backstreet’ trade in stolen plastic trays exposes a hidden crime which undermines the UK’s recycling efforts, one which involves removing plastic bakery equipment from the supply chain, causing significant disruption. 

Bakers Basco’s dedicated national recovery team, who work 24/7 to try and stamp out this activity using pioneering ways to trace and retrieve stolen or missing baskets, worked closely with investigative reporter Jeanette Oldham of Reach Plc to lift the lid on this important issue. The team has been involved in numerous court cases over the years as part of its efforts to bring justice to those companies who are operating unlawfully – not just for the sake of the bakery businesses who are losing equipment, but also for the environment. 

“Most people see recycling as a benefit to society: but sometimes, the exact opposite is the case,” says Paul Empson, General Manager of Bakers Basco. “We are delighted to see the awareness efforts of our team paying off and would like to thank Jeanette and the team at Reach Plc for giving us this national platform on which to shed some light on what is a major growing problem for the UK’s transport and logistics industries around the unethical recycling of stolen plastic items that don’t need to be recycled.”

“During the past few years working with Bakers Basco we have become increasingly alarmed at the number of legal proceedings initiated against companies recycling plastic illegally or unnecessarily,” said Kelly Lloyd-Watson, Managing Director of KLPR. “We realised that this problem was not only a Midlands-focused issue but actually a national one. For this reason we felt it our duty to contact the newspaper with the hope that they would investigate this issue further and take it seriously enough to publish our story.” 

“We are extremely grateful to them for listening to us and hope that the government will now tackle this problem to rid the UK of these exploitive people who have no obvious regard for their actions, or indeed the environment!” added Lloyd-Watson. 

Read the full article here*:

*This article was subsequently published by Mail Online.