What is resour­ce-effi­ci­ent and sus­tainab­le pack­a­ging? In order to dis­cuss this topic, the IHK brought tog­e­ther repre­sen­ta­ti­ves from a wide ran­ge of indus­tries. In addi­ti­on to Land­pack, the­se inclu­ded repre­sen­ta­ti­ves from tech­no­lo­gy groups, food com­pa­nies, was­te manage­ment, pro­duct desi­gners for sus­tainab­le pack­a­ging as well as rese­ar­chers and con­sul­tants in the field of bio­plastics. The work­shop is based abo­ve all on the new, ambi­tious legis­la­ti­ve pro­po­sals at federal and EU level, which pre­sent manu­fac­tu­rers, retailers and con­su­mers with new challenges.

The­re was a lively exchan­ge bet­ween the par­ti­ci­pants — dif­fe­rent per­spec­ti­ves met. The ques­ti­on was par­ti­cu­lar­ly inte­res­ting: What is a tru­ly sus­tainab­le pack­a­ging solu­ti­on if the pro­duct cycle of raw mate­ri­als, pri­ma­ry ener­gy requi­re­ments of pro­duc­tion and dis­po­sal are actual­ly considered?

In the end, all par­ti­ci­pants agreed: more trans­pa­ren­cy, dis­cus­sion and edu­ca­ti­on in the various are­as is necessa­ry to enab­le retailers and manu­fac­tu­rers to make the right decisi­ons for sus­tainab­le packaging.

 

Legis­la­ti­ve plans short & sweet:

EU Cir­cu­lar Eco­no­my Packa­ge: Reduc­tion of was­te to the land­fill (max. 5% muni­ci­pal was­te by 2030), reduc­tion of food was­te, hig­her recy­cling rates for muni­ci­pal was­te, new cal­cu­la­ti­ons for recy­cling rates.

Euro­pean stra­te­gy for plastics: All plastic pack­a­ging pla­ced on the EU mar­ket must be reus­able or cost-effec­tively recy­cled, half of the plastic was­te gene­ra­ted in Euro­pe will be recy­cled, sepa­ra­ti­on and recy­cling capa­ci­ty will be qua­dru­pled com­pa­red to 2015, export of poor­ly sor­ted plastic was­te will be pha­sed out.

Requi­re­ments inclu­de: Pro­duct design, use of micro­plastics, restric­tions on dis­po­sable plastics, expan­si­on of take-back and depo­sit sys­tems, qua­li­ty stan­dards for separated/recycled plastic was­te (with indus­try), etc.

EU Pro­po­sal Direc­ti­ve: Sin­gle Use Plastic (May 2019): Mem­ber Sta­tes pro­hi­bit the sale of cot­ton swabs, drin­king straws, cut­le­ry, pla­tes, stir­rers, chop­sticks, bal­loon rods. Fur­ther pro­duct requi­re­ments, label­ling requi­re­ments, tar­get values etc. for take-away, bags, foils etc. are also included.

Ger­man Pack­a­ging Act — from 01.01.2019: Regis­tra­ti­on of all com­pa­nies brin­ging pack­a­ging onto the mar­ket at the Cen­tral Office for Pack­a­ging, with a goal of hig­her recy­cling rates. Dual sys­tems must crea­te incen­ti­ves to pro­mo­te mate­ri­al com­bi­na­ti­ons that can be recy­cled at a high percentage.