Press Release
12 Sep 2015

Packaging Value Chain Industries launch joint recommendations for a resource-efficient Circular Economy

Brussels, 21 September 2015 – EUROPEN and 29 other associations* representing a large range of industries and sectors including major consumer goods brands, packaging producers, material producers and extended producer responsibility (EPR) organisations, announced today a set of joint recommendations for the new Circular Economy proposals expected from the European Commission by the end of 2015.

The 30 organisations call for a long-term strategic EU policy framework that enables and facilitates sustainable resource use from a full lifecycle perspective, incentivises economies of scale and takes into account value chains at all levels, each with their different functional needs and supply and demand realities.

In order for the forthcoming EU proposals to benefit the environment as well as European competitiveness, jobs and growth, we need a holistic approach that recognises the positive role of packaging in optimising resource use, minimising product waste and protecting products all along the many and varied value chains that are concerned”, said Martin Reynolds, Chairman of EUROPEN. “We call on the EU to ensure that a full lifecycle approach to packaging and the Internal Market principle is firmly embedded in future EU measures, as it is today in the Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive, the cornerstone of EU law for our sector,” said Mr Reynolds.

The joint industry recommendations announced today call on the EU to ensure that the Circular Economy package:

  • Safeguards the free movement of packaging and packaged goods in the EU Internal Market
  • Ensures the full implementation and enforcement of existing EU laws
  • Strengthens the EU legal framework for Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) for used packaging
  • Establishes a solid, comparable and harmonised calculation method for packaging recycling rates
  • Sets realistic and achievable packaging recycling targets based on known baselines
  • Diverts packaging materials from landfill

The packaging supply chain has achieved considerable progress in resource efficiency, including recycling and recovery over the past twenty years, supported by the holistic approach enshrined in current EU legislation”, said Virginia Janssens, Managing Director of EUROPEN. “We are committed to persevering along this road. The joint recommendations that we co-signed with such a broad range of sectors today point to a clear path ahead through which EU legislation can further enable our diverse industries to achieve continuous environmental improvement while continuing to contribute to a vibrant, innovative and competitive European economy,” concluded Ms Janssens.

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ACE - The Alliance for Beverage Cartons and the Environment, AIM - European Brands Association, A.I.S.E.- The International Association for Soaps, Detergents and Maintenance Products, ARA - Altstoff Recycling Austria AG Packaging Compliance Scheme, Austria, Cosmetics EuropeDSD - Der Grüne Punkt Dual System for Packaging Recycling, Germany, EAA – European Aluminium, Eco-Emballages – Packaging Recovery Organisation, France, EDANA - The International Association Serving the Nonwovens and Related Industries, Elipso - French Plastic and Flexible Packaging Association, EPRO - European Association of Plastics Recycling and Recovery Organisations, European Bioplastics e.V.EXPRA - Extended Producer Responsibility Alliance aisbl, FEA – European Aerosol Federation, FEVE – the European Container Glass Federation, FPE – Flexible Packaging Europe, IK Industrievereinigung Kunststoffverpackungen e.V.INCPEN – The Industry Council for Research on Packaging and the Environment, INTERGRAF - European Federation for Print and Digital Communication, MPE - Metal Packaging Europe, Pack2Go Europe – Europe’s Convenience Food Packaging Association, PlasticsEurope - Association of Plastics Manufacturers, REKOPOL – Recovery Organisation S.A., Poland, Repak – Packaging Recovery Organisation, Ireland, SERVING EUROPE - Branded Food and Beverage Service Chains Association, Sociedade Ponto Verde, S.A. – Packaging Recovery Organisation, Portugal, TIE - Toy Industries of Europe, UNESDA - Union of European Soft Drinks Associations, Valpak - Environmental Compliance, Recycling and Sustainability Solutions, UK