On April 24, 2024, the European Parliament validated the final provisional agreement on the PPWR with 476 votes in favor, 129 against, and 24 abstentions.

Regarding the approved document, there are some main focuses to pay attention to:

  • Packaging reduction targets of 5% by 2030, 10% by 2035, and 15% by 2040 have been set, with EU countries required to reduce their plastic packaging waste.
  • Plastic packaging will be held to minimum recycled content targets, and minimum recycling targets by weight of packaging waste will also be enforced.
  • Per- and polyfluorinated alkyl substances, also known as PFAS or ‘forever chemicals’, will be prohibited above certain thresholds in food contact packaging to combat negative impacts on human health.
  • A maximum empty space ratio of 50% has also been set in an effort to reduce unnecessary packaging. This will apply to grouped, transport, and e-commerce packaging.

Several articles have been pointed out as key provisions for the agreement. You can find some below:

  • Internal market & Labelling: 

Article 4 states that member states are allowed to maintain or introduce additional national sustainability or information requirements. Also, member states should allow the presence in the market of packaging that comply with the regulation.

Article 12 says that packaging must be marked with harmonized labels which will provide information on several characteristics of the packaging, helping the consumer in sorting it. EPR markings will only be mandated via digital means.

  • Recyclability:

Article 6 brings important information on recyclability. From 1 January 2030, all packaging must be recyclable, following recyclable design criteria that will be established by 1 January 2028. Other important news of this article is related to recyclability at scale, which from 1 January 2035 must be applied in line with certain conditions. As from 1 January 2028, packaging won’t be allowed in the EU market unless their grade of recyclability is within A or B.

  • Recycled content:

Article 7 set some targets in terms of plastic parts of packaging and format, while derogating, for example, different contact sensitive applications.

  • Reuse:

Article 29 sets different targets for different sectors and packaging formats, including transport and beverages packaging. Additional measures have been added, such as the implementation from the European Commission by 2027.

The text will now undergo a full review by the lawyer-linguists and should be validated by the newly elected EU Parliament and by the Council as part of the next legislative mandate.

Members advantage: Are you a member of IBE-BVI and you would like to receive the adopted text according to this plenary vote? Click here!

Federico Bassotto April 30, 2024
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