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EP plenary vote on PPWR advances circularity, but fails to correct priority access and using bio-based plastics in recycled content targets

22 November 2023

Today, the European Parliament adopted its position on the Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation (PPWR), marking progress in packaging circularity, but also marking a setback.

EuRIC welcomes the adoption of Amendment 435, focusing on the certification of recycled content, which marks a crucial victory for the environment and the competitiveness of European recyclers. This amendment combats counterfeit recycled content and greenwashing in the EU market, ensuring a level playing. EuRIC now urges the Council to join this momentum. EuRIC also supports the Parliament’s focus emphasis on ensuring that all packaging is recyclable through strict criteria and the introduction of a 90% separate collection target for all packaging materials.

We also welcome the plenary’s call for banning intentionally added PFASs, (per- and polyfluorinated alkyl substances) and Bisphenol A in food contact packaging, and reiterate our position that the PPWR’s restriction of intentionally added PFAS should not affect the REACH process outcomes.

However, the endorsement of AM 138, which allows bio-based plastic feedstock to count towards up to 50% of recycled content targets, undermines the effectiveness of recycling efforts and favours petroleum-based plastics. We strongly urge the Council to clearly separate these two categories and provide legal clarity to maintain the integrity of recycled content targets.

EuRIC is disappointed with the approval of priority access for certain producers to recycled materials (AMs 102, 266), which we regard as an intervention in free market principles. This approach risks undermining the recycling market by favouring larger producers and impacting small and medium-sized enterprises adversely. We count on the Council to overturn the Parliament’s approach and foster a regulatory framework which allows the recycling industry to invest in capacity-building and innovation to recycle plastics in the EU.

EuRIC remains committed to collaborating with all stakeholders to ensure that the PPWR fully supports a sustainable, effective, and fair recycling ecosystem in the EU.

 

Note to editor:

For press-related enquiries, please contact Zoi Didili, EuRIC Communication Advisor, by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by phone at +32 (0) 489 09 46 02.  The European Recycling Industries’ Confederation (EuRIC) is the umbrella organisation for the recycling industries in Europe. Through its 75 members from 23 European countries, EuRIC represents more than 5,500 large companies and SMEs involved in the recycling and trade of various resource streams. They represent a contribution of 95 billion EUR to the EU economy and 300,000 green and local jobs. By turning waste into resources, recycling reintroduces valuable materials into value chains over and over again. By bridging circularity and climate neutrality, recyclers are pioneers in leading Europe’s industrial transition.