A DRINKS firm in Bury has been at the forefront of finding an environmental solution when drinkers have drained beer kegs at the region's hostelries.

Bosses at the WDS Group, on the Peel Mills industrial estate, have been teaming up with OneCircle to help repurpose Key Kegs, an industry staple for the licensed trade.

And over the past 18 months the Chamberhall Street outfit has recycled 25 tonnes of key materials back into the supply chain. This is equivalent to around 20,800 kegs, which can come in 10, 20 or 30 litre capacities.

The partners have developed a closed loop plastics collection system for their rgional arket.

A KeyKegs spokesman said: "In addition to the collection activities, we spend significant research and development capacity to further increase the percentage of re-used material in the next new KeyKeg’s .

"Our collection partners, such as WDS, play a critical part in the ability for us to deliver on our objectives as set out in our mission.

"To offer some additional insight we share what happens after receiving the materials from WDS. The different plastics from the collected kegs will be shredded, separated and finally sorted on an automatic recycling line.

"The recovered mono materials are then further processed to be used again for the production of new KeyKeg parts.

"In this way today 86 per cent of every collected used KeyKeg is turned into new KeyKeg parts. The remaining part of the KeyKegs will be recycled differently.

"We would like to take the opportunity to thank WDS for being such a pro-active partner."

Sam Evans, WDS sales director, added: “We estimate more than 500,000 KeyKegs end up in Manchester alone every year and it is great we can now use them as raw materials again.

The link-up between the two operators, which runs across the North of England, first began in 2019 and several case studies have been published to refine the recycling process since then.