UK packaging producers could be affected by differentiated fees

 UK packaging producers could be affected by a growing number of European countries implementing differentiated fees based on eco-design and recyclability criteria, according to leading resource efficiency specialist Ecosurety. Norway and Germany have proposed legislation that would see producers paying more if they place complex packaging onto their local market. France already charges producers more for harder-to-recycle packaging and Italy is looking to trial fee changes next year. It could mean UK producers will have to pay more for recycling if they do not improve the recyclability of their packaging aimed at EU markets. 

The topic will be among those discussed during a one day seminar organised by Ecosurety on 19 January. The international compliance seminar, in central London, will cover packaging, WEEE, and battery compliance outside the UK. Monika Romansky, regulatory and public affairs manager at EXPRA (Extended Producer Responsibility Alliance) will also speak at the event. 

Fran Witthuhn, international compliance specialist at Ecosurety, says, “In the UK, producers pay a contribution towards the recycling industry, in the rest of Europe producers finance the collection and recycling of packaging waste to encourage households to recycle more materials.  The landscape is further complicated by the fact that if more and more EU countries adopt differentiated fees, an objective outlined in the EU’s Circular Economy Package, each country could conceivably lay down different packaging design rules, which would add cost and complexity when placing product in individual markets.”

She continues, “Differentiated fees are in the long-term an opportunity for packaging producers to re-think their designs or practices to further increase recycling levels. They will eventually provide producers who refine their practises, with the opportunity to save money. “

Other topics on the seminar agenda include: product stewardship and take-back outside of the EU, particularly in North America, e-commerce and third party fulfilment. There will also be discussions about evolving producer responsibility, with a final round table discussion featuring an external speaker, plus insight on reforming the current packaging recovery note (PRN) system, and an introduction to Ecosurety’s solution Circularety. A networking session will be after the seminar has concluded.

Witthuhn concludes: “This seminar is aimed at helping producers who want all the facts currently available at their fingertips, so they can make smart decisions as they head into 2017.”

The event will be held at Ashfords LLP, London, EC14 1AN. More information can be found here

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