Packaging Your Future

The current EU Packaging Directive is set to be replaced by a regulation on packaging and packaging waste. 

The upcoming EU Packaging Regulation is designed to replace or expand the current directive, contributing to the harmonization of existing packaging laws.

Its primary goal is to counter the continuous increase in packaging waste. The main objective is to reduce packaging waste in the EU by at least 15% by 2040 compared to 2018.

So, is it an opportunity or challenge? 

From this article, firsly, let's see some significant changes of packaging proposed in the PPWR: 

  1. A. Heavy Metals
    The PPWR (as proposed by the EC) would require that the presence of lead, cadmium, mercury, and hexavalent chromium be minimized with the concentration level of all four heavy metals not exceeding 100 mg/kg. 

    B. Recyclability
    The PPWR would require that all packaging be recyclable. Specifically, by 1 January 2030, packaging would need to comply with design for recycling criteria, and by 1 January 2035 recyclable packaging would be required to comply with recyclability at scale requirements. 

    C. Recycled Content in Plastic Packaging
    The PPWR proposes to increase the recycled content of plastic packaging. 

    D. Packaging Minimization
    The PPWR would require that packaging be reduced to the minimum necessary for ensuring its functionality. Packaging not necessary to satisfy certain performance criteria and packaging only intended to increase the perceived volume of the packaging would be banned unless subject to geographical indications of origins protected under EU law. The PPWR stresses that empty space must be reduced to the minimum necessary. Further, economic operators who supply products to a final distributor or end user in grouped packaging, transport or e-commerce packaging must ensure that the ratio of empty space in the packaging in relation to the packaged product(s) is a maximum of 40%.

    Based on the above changes, as a cosmetic brand or a cosmetic packaging supplier, what should we do?

    It is recommended that businesses familiarize themselves with the draft proposal and stay informed of any amendments. From a practical standpoint, businesses can take the following steps: 
    Establish a comprehensive range of sustainability metrics and survey packaging suppliers on the criteria.  
    Use this as a learning opportunity in procurement strategy and engage with switched-on suppliers who are readily focused on making improvements.
    Investigate design alternatives to prepare products or packaging for reuse/refill targets and identify additional enhancements that can be made in the design stage.
    Engage with compliance schemes and industry professionals to gain a better understanding of packaging and recycling improvements.
    Establish systems that allow companies to develop in-depth knowledge of the composition of their product and/or packaging data.
    The emphasis on creating a circular economy in the EU has never been stronger, and taking the appropriate steps toward achieving these goals now will ensure a smooth transition in the future. 


With the introduction of new collection and reporting requirements relating to packaging and the future implementation of the EPR Packaging Scheme in the UK (with similar moves happening in the EU), organisations that deal with packaging in these markets will need to ensure they comply with the relevant data collection and reporting requirements. 

These new rules present an opportunity for businesses to consider adopting more sustainable practices throughout the entire lifecycle of products and product end-of-life management. These rules also encourage exploring eco-friendly materials and implementing efficient waste reduction strategies.

If you would like further information about this topic and how the new rules may impact your business, please contact the UKPACK team. 

Post time: 2024-01-18 18:13:38
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