Vodafone is encouraging businesses to boost their mobile phone recycling to help the environment, raise money for charity and provide affordable phones for poorer countries.

The new Vodafone initiative is in partnership with leading recycling company Fonebak . It's aimed at creating awareness among UK employers. It's offering businesses a campaign pack including posters and a recycling box, plus digital initiatives (emails, texts, screensavers etc) to encourage recycling of phones and accessories.

Vodafone estimates that every year in the UK 11.3 million mobile phones are thrown away. Only a third of the UK population have so far ever recycled a mobile phone.

Vodafone is using money raised from business mobile recycling schemes for charity with the National Autistic Society, its main beneficiary. Vodafone is offering recycling packs to its corporate customers, although it will also collect phones from other operators.