Posts Tagged ‘Packaging’

PET Recycling Growth in South Africa

Posted by GlobalPSC at 8:36 pm, April 30th, 2017Comments0

 

PETCO, the organization responsible for fulfilling the South African PET plastic industry’s role of Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR), recently announced their annual PET recycling rate had increased from 52% of post-consumer bottle PET in 2015 to 55% in 2016, exceeding their expected target for the second consecutive year.

PETCO recycled an additional 22% of post-consumer bottles in comparison to the previous year, with the total PET market growing by 14.8% to 241,269 tonnes.

“PETCO is delighted with the latest figures,” says PETCO’s CEO Cheri Scholtz. “Through the remarkable network of people, companies and organisations we work with, 2 billion PET bottles were collected for recycling across South Africa during the course of 2016, creating some 62,000 income opportunities for small and micro-collectors, and changing their lives and those of their families in immeasurable ways.”

The voluntary recycling fee paid annually by PETCO members on every tonne of raw material purchased has enabled the payment of a total of R1.9 billion (~ 130 million or ~US$142 million) by contracted recyclers to collectors for baled bottles since the inception of PETCO in 2004, ensuring the collection of PET bottles for recycling is sustained, and resulting in almost 800,000 tonnes of carbon and over 3 million m3 of landfill space saved to date.

PETCO reports that South Africa’s 55% post-consumer PET recycling rate compares well with international PET recycling rates of ~ 30% in the US and European average rates of ~ 59%. However, PETCO also notes that considerable work is being done globally to understand these statistics, as the bases differ substantially and a direct comparison cannot be assumed.

Information and graphic supplied by PETCO.

 

CleanFARMS Expands Programming to Seed and Pesticide Bags

Posted by GlobalPSC at 9:26 am, October 28th, 2015Comments1

Canada’s leading agricultural stewardship organization, CleanFARMS, is expanding its stewardship programming. Starting in 2016, Eastern Canadian farmers will have access to a seed and pesticide bag collection program that will help keep these bags out of municipal landfills.

This program draws its roots in the Maritimes where farmers, ag-retailers and stewards have been working together to collect and safely dispose of empty pesticide bags since 2006. The program then moved west to Ontario and Quebec where it was offered on a pilot basis in select regions from 2012 – 2015.

The program will collect both small pesticide and seed bags (typically under 30 kilograms) and bigger bulk bags. The small bags are generally made of multi-walled paper though some manufacturers are using other materials such as plastic and plastic laminates. Most bulk bags (mainly 500 kg and 1000 kg) bags are made of woven poly-propylene plastic.

Empty bags will be accepted back at the point of purchase which gives farmers easily accessible collection points. They are then disposed of through waste to energy incineration facilities. As the program grows, CleanFARMS hopes to move higher up on the 3Rs hierarchy by recycling of the bags. The key to recycling some of these bags will be to ensure a consistent and adequate supply of the bags.

CleanFARMS and its predecessor CropLife Canada, on behalf of the agricultural industry, have been operating extended producer responsibility (EPR) programs for over 25 years. This new program shows that the agricultural industry embraces EPR and incorporates the practice as normal business practice.

In 2014, 197,000 bags were collected through the program. This is in addition to the 4.5 million containers that came through CleanFARMS’ award-winning empty pesticide and fertilizer container recycling program. To round off 2014, 224,000 kilograms of obsolete pesticides and 5,000 kilograms of obsolete livestock medication were collected and safely destroyed.

CleanFARMS now joins agricultural stewardship organizations around the world offering EPR programs on a voluntary basis with results rivalling most regulated programs.

Visit here for more information.

Photo supplied by CleanFARMS.

 

Guest Blog – Dutch Sustainability Plans for Packaging

Posted by GlobalPSC at 1:24 pm, August 13th, 2015Comments2

The Global Product Stewardship Council periodically invites thought leaders on product stewardship and producer responsibility to contribute guest blogs. Our guest blogger for this post is Gill Bevington, Policy Analyst, Packaging for Perchards.

 

 

The packaging sustainability institute, KIDV, KIDV has published an overview in English about the progress of the sustainability plans which industry undertook to develop as part of its commitments in the Framework Agreement on Packaging.

KIDV reports that sectoral sustainability plans covering 80% of the weight of packaging on the market have now been submitted. This first set of plans sets out objectives and measures to achieve them by 2018 and further plans will be developed with objectives for 2022.

Since the Framework Agreement was signed, the Packaging Decree has been revised. The revised Decree, which was adopted in 2014, gives the Minister powers to impose statutory sustainability requirements on packaging. These new powers are seen as fall back powers if the plans now being developed do not deliver the results the Dutch authorities are hoping for. It is important therefore that Dutch industry supports and implements the plans.

KIDV’s methodology for the plans is to identify the front runners in each sector, and then aim to bring all companies in that sector up to the same level. Targets for the sector are based on the best in class. The plans were assessed by an independent review committee established by KIDV and consisting of four experts from different universities.

As KIDV’s approach was innovative, it was challenging to get the sectors involved in the development of the plans. Some showed reluctance at first, comments KIDV, but because the approach was unfamiliar, not through lack of interest. KIDV warns that the process will take time, depending on the level of investment needed to implement the plans and because the scientific knowledge needed to set targets was not available in all cases.

Each sectoral plan sets out the measures to be taken by producers in order to increase the sustainability of product-pack combinations within their sector, both measures to be taken by 2018 and then by 2022. Each sector is responsible for implementing its plan. The focus is currently on the product-pack combinations with the greatest potential environmental benefit.

The first plans to be developed cover the fruit and vegetables, food (including animal feed) and e-commerce sectors. A sub-plan for rPET 2018-2022 has been submitted by the Dutch association for soft drinks, waters and juices.

The main focus of the first plans to be submitted is:

  • greater use of sustainably managed and certified raw materials, such as FSC;
  • increase in the proportion of secondary raw materials in packaging, such as in plastic bottles and pots, tubs and trays (PTT)s;
  • decrease in the quantity of materials used, through optimisation and source reduction;
  • increasing the recyclability of packaging, through the use of mono-materials;
  • use of recycling logos on packaging to enable consumers to sort their packaging better.

There is nothing new about policy-makers encouraging producers to improve the environmental performance of their packaging. Industry bodies throughout Europe have for years published good practice examples of optimised packaging, including source reduction, improved recyclability etc, which aim both to encourage other producers and to demonstrate to policy-makers the efforts being made.

It has always been up to each producer to decide whether and how to optimise its packaging. Even in countries like Belgium and Spain, where producers have to submit prevention plans to the authorities, the producers set their own targets in their plans. But the new Dutch approach is different – it seeks to identify which are the best product-pack combinations in a sector under different headings and then to bring all producers in that sector up to that standard. With the threat of legislation if the plans do not yield as much as expected, sectoral trade associations will be working hard to encourage their members to participate in the process.

But it raises some questions:

  • What happens if the front runner is in that enviable position because of a unique set of circumstances which other producers in the sector cannot emulate?
  • How much pressure will individual companies be under to improve their sustainability in order to meet the targets in the plan? There may be sound reasons why a producer cannot match the best in class. Plans are being implemented by the sectors so individual companies will be judged by their peers (competitors) who will understand the constraints. But if it looks as though the objectives in a plan will not be met, which could have implications for all producers in the sector, what then?
  • What about imported products, for which the importer will have to persuade its foreign suppliers to make the necessary changes? That might not be possible or desirable because of the longer transport distances and/or because the preferred packaging type is not available in the country of production. Individual Dutch importers are of course free to set their own product/packaging specifications, but if those specifications are set out in a formal plan, could they represent a barrier to trade to suppliers in other EU member states?
  • Could there be problems with commercial confidentiality? Some front runners may be happy to be named and to provide information about their packaging. But others may prefer to keep the data confidential because their optimised packaging helps to give them their competitive edge. And will the laggards be named and shamed, even if there are sound reasons why they cannot match the best in class?

What happens if the results in 2018 are not as good as expected, even if the sectors have worked hard to improve the sustainability of their packaging? How will Dutch policy-makers respond? Will they acknowledge that the achievements are as good as they possibly can be and that, using the methodology, performance will continue to improve in future? Or will they conclude that this “voluntary” action is insufficient and that legislation is necessary? It remains to be seen whether this new Dutch approach is just rhetoric or whether it will deliver real improvements.

The views expressed do not necessarily reflect those of the Global Product Stewardship Council. 

Gill Bevington joined Perchards in 1991 and currently serves as Policy Analyst, Packaging. She monitors, analyses and reports on European legislative developments on packaging (and industry response to them) at national and EU level, and is an expert on national packaging waste management initiatives across Europe. Gill has carried out many tailor-made studies for clients on aspects of the packaging legislation in place in various European countries and speaks regularly at conferences on the subject. 

 

PVC Resource Summit 2015

Posted by GlobalPSC at 3:26 pm, August 12th, 2015Comments0

The Vinyl Council of Australia is convening an interactive Resource Summit to form alliances and plans for PVC recovery and recycling.

The summit will:

  • explore opportunities to access and source PVC for cost-effective input into new products
  • identify products, markets and challenges and form strategies for the future
  • combine expertise and networks to accelerate recovery and recycling in Australia

Key facts include:

  • in 2014 PVC use in Australia reached 190,000 tonnes for windows, flooring, medical, packaging and other areas
  • 85% of PVC is used in durable applications, particularly building products
  • there is an estimated 67,000 tonnes per annum of PVC waste to recycle in Australia
  • currently about 10-15% of this waste is diverted from landfill for recycling

Program and registration details are available here.

 

São Paulo Brazil Introduces Reverse Logistics Requirements for Products and Packaging

Posted by GlobalPSC at 6:34 pm, July 31st, 2015Comments1

São Paulo Brazil’s Department of the Environment has introduced obligations on manufacturers, importers, distributors and traders for reverse logistics systems for a range of products and packaging (with some specified exemptions). Specified products include:

  • used lubricating oil
  • edible oil
  • automotive oil filters
  • automotive batteries
  • portable batteries and batteries
  • electronic products and components
  • fluorescent, sodium vapor, mercury and mixed lights
  • scrap tires
  • expired or unused medicines

The GlobalPSC is in the process of seeking clarification of several key provisions and will advise accordingly.

 

South Africa Requires Industry Waste Management Plans

Posted by GlobalPSC at 5:20 pm, July 31st, 2015Comments1

iStock_000004145826_Large_South_Africa_Flag

South Africa has issued requirements for the paper and packaging industry, electrical and electronic equipment industry and lighting industry to prepare and submit industry waste management plans for approval by the Minister of Environmental Affairs under the National Environmental Management Act 2008.

Details on requirements, consultation process, timeframes and penalties for non-compliance are available to GlobalPSC members in the Knowledge Base under the Frameworks & Harmonization tab.

 

New Zealand Feedback on Priority Waste Streams

Posted by GlobalPSC at 4:22 pm, April 30th, 2015Comments1

The New Zealand Ministry for the Environment (MfE) has released a summary of submissions on its discussion paper on the prioritisation of waste streams for product stewardship intervention.

Stakeholders generally agreed with the MfE’s criteria for prioritisation but suggested weighting ‘risk of harm’ and ‘resource efficiency’ higher than other criteria. Stakeholders also generally agreed with the MfE’s proposed priority products (electronic and electrical equipment; tyres; agrichemicals and farm plastics; and refrigerants and other synthetic greenhouse gases), but recommended adding packaging and plastic bags for prioritisation.

Mike Mendonca of the MfE (pictured below) announced the summary’s release and reviewed its findings during the recent WasteMINZ Roundup in Auckland, which emphasised product stewardship. In a session with Mike and WasteMINZ Board Chair Darren Patterson, GlobalPSC CEO Russ Martin outlined overseas developments in product stewardship and their implications for New Zealand.

GlobalPSC Advisory Group members Helen Lewis of Helen Lewis Research and John Gertsakis of Infoactiv were also active participants in the Roundup discussions, as was Paul-Antoine Bontinck of the Vinyl Council of Australia.

Public consultations on priority products opened in May 2014.  The GlobalPSC submission developed in conjunction with our Advisory Group is available to GlobalPSC members via our Knowledge Base, under the Frameworks and Harmonisation heading.

 

Packaging Discussions Focus on Circular Economy, Free-riders and Competition

Posted by GlobalPSC at 6:06 am, March 1st, 2015Comments1

2015-02-24 20.30.36(L-R: Ullar Huik of ETO, Helmut Schmitz of Duales System Holding GmbH, Joacim Quoden of EXPRA and Seamus Clancy of Repak)

The GlobalPSC and several of our members addressed a range of packaging extended producer responsibility (EPR) and product stewardship issues for packaging and printed paper in Brussels, Belgium, late February as part of the EPR Toolkit Seminar and Packaging Waste & Sustainability Forum.

Joachim Quoden, Managing Director of the Extended Producer Responsibility Alliance (EXPRA)  and member of the GlobalPSC Advisory Group, chaired the EPR Toolkit Seminar on 24 February. The seminar emphasised harmonising EPR rules and guidelines in Europe, learning from international experience (including lessons on Australia by GlobalPSC CEO Russ Martin and Canada by Chris van Rossem of the Canadian Stewardship Services Alliance) and the roles of transparency and competition.

The roles of packaging and EPR in the Circular Economy and in ensuring transparency and accountability of producers were hot topics of discussion throughout the events, analysis of which will be made available to GlobalPSC members.

GlobalPSC Corporate Member – Orora Limited

Posted by GlobalPSC at 9:13 am, January 30th, 2015Comments2

Orora Limited is a leader in innovative packaging solutions, employing 5,700 people across 115 sites in seven countries. Orora supplies a broad range of fibre, metal and glass packaging solutions, as well as packaging-related services including distribution and recycling. The team at Orora prides itself on innovation, working closely with its customers to deliver design and engineering services that ultimately improve the way people consume products in everyday life. Orora is headquartered in Melbourne, Australia and is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange. 

 

GlobalPSC Member – Innes & Company LLC

Posted by GlobalPSC at 3:36 pm, January 28th, 2015Comments2

Innes & Company LLC is a U.S.-based consultancy assisting clients around the globe in reaching their goals in the areas of product stewardship and sustainability.

Innes & Company President Melissa Walsh Innes is a former legislator with extensive experience in recycling and product stewardship legislation, including packaging, paint, medical sharps, pharmaceuticals, compact fluorescent lamps, electronics, and containers.

Melissa was the sponsor of Maine’s first-in-the-nation Product Stewardship Framework Law of 2010, as well as the sponsor of a successful electronic recycling program expansion in 2011 (both enacted with unanimous bipartisan support).

Melissa is the former deputy director for Recycling Reinvented, a U.S. national nonprofit working to advance recycling policies to increase national recycling rates for packaging and printed paper. Her experience at Recycling Reinvented incorporated best practices from recycling experts around the world, knowledge that Melissa uses to benefit the clients of Innes & Company.

In her time at Recycling Reinvented, Melissa further honed her skills in client engagement, stakeholder relations, media outreach, organization development, and policy crafting.

Melissa’s experience and approach to policy negotiation and stakeholder relations includes working side by side with a variety of stakeholders, from environmental organizations to chambers of commerce. Innes & Company helps clients achieve their policy goals using the same successful approach.

Contact details include:
400 East Elm Street
Yarmouth, Maine 04096  USA
207.847.3177 (office)
melissa@innesandcompany.com
Twitter: @InnesReport

Melissa also serves as a member of the GlobalPSC Advisory Group.

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