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On 2 July 2014, the European Commission adopted proposals to amend six EU Waste Directives including the Waste Framework Directive (WFD) and the Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive (PPWD). These proposals were accompanied by a Communication on the Circular Economy.
INCPEN is concerned these proposals will:
  • restrict industry’s ability  to design packaging that will be even more effective in preventing food waste and responding to societal changes and consumers’ needs  
  • impose disproportionate financial costs on business and consumers  (Consumers pay in the end – either directly via local taxes for waste treatment or by increased prices for goods if the supply chain carries the cost).
 See our brief for MEPs and Member States’ government officials

The environmental impact of packaging in the UK is controlled by two different pieces of packaging legislation. One covers industry’s role in ensuring that the UK meets recovery and recycling targets, and the other requires producers to ensure that their packaging meets eco-design standards.

These two laws implement the Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive 94/62/EC , which is Europe-wide packaging legislation.

The Producer Responsibility Obligations (Packaging Waste) Regulations require businesses handling more than 50 tonnes of packaging and with an annual turnover of more than £2 million to take responsibility for getting specified tonnages of packaging waste recycled.

The packaging and packaged goods industry contributes about £60 million per year to support recycling and in 2008, the UK’s packaging recycling rate was 62% - roughly the average for the 15 countries in membership of the EU before it expanded to 27.

The Packaging (Essential Requirements) Regulations 2003 and The Packaging (Essential Requirements) (Amendment) Regulations 2009 allow packaging to be placed on the market only if it meets EU eco-design requirements. Among other things, packaging weight and volume must be the minimum needed for safety, hygiene and acceptability of the packaged product.


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