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Working on fund solution for more recyclable packaging

Picture with plastic packaging on the supermarket shelf

The German government is working on a proposal for a fund solution for the recycling-friendly design of packaging, reports Euwid.

This is the result of a response from the German government to a minor question from the CDU/CSU parliamentary group in the Bundestag. The task of the dual system operators, which has been laid down in Section 21 of the Packaging Act since 2019, to favour more recyclable packaging and the use of recyclates in terms of price, has not led to the hoped-for success, the German government explains in its answer. In its current form, Section 21 VerpackG had already sent an important signal to manufacturers of packaging subject to system participation in favour of ecological packaging design. Building on this, it was now necessary to further develop the current regulation. According to the answer, the government does not want to set up a public fund. It goes on to say that the federal government wants to include information available from the dual systems, including a model proposal for a private-sector solution, in its deliberations on developing a model. According to the German government, the legal options and scope for revising Section 21 VerpackG will depend in particular on the ongoing negotiations on the proposal for a European regulation on packaging and packaging waste (PPWR). The economic sectors affected also referred to this in a letter to the Ministry of the Environment in autumn 2023, in which they spoke out in favour of a private-sector fund solution, writes Euwid. According to the associations involved - Markenverband, Handelsverband Deutschland, Bundesvereinigung der Deutschen Ernährungsindustrie and IK Industrievereinigung Kunststoffverpackungen - the EU Commission's forthcoming proposal for a new packaging regulation will probably recommend that lower licence fees be paid to the dual systems for highly recyclable packaging than for less recyclable packaging. The associations would see such EU-wide harmonisation of the criteria for financial incentives as a real driver of innovation that could significantly promote investment in circular packaging design and in the collection and recycling infrastructure. The associations cited the German minimum standard of the Central Agency Packaging Register (ZSVR) as the basis for measuring recyclability. This must be further developed into a clear basis for assessment without any room for interpretation. According to the associations, the dual systems should collect the amounts for the recycling fund and pass them on to it. In the view of the associations, the fund resources should be used in particular for the recyclability of packaging and the use of plastic recyclates in a competition-neutral manner. The industry is also calling for a say in cost control and key aspects such as the definition of recyclability and the use of funds.

  • (24.1.2024)
  • Photo: Pixelio, Siepmann

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