EU Parliament approves the Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation (PPWR) in its plenary vote

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Brussels 25 April 2024

On April 24th, the European Parliament voted in favour of the inter-institutional agreement on the Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation (PPWR). The corrugated cardboard industry welcomes this formal endorsement and acknowledges the overarching ambition of the PPWR in advancing the EU's environmental objectives while consolidating the efficiency of the internal market.
The next step for the Regulation is to obtain formal approval from the Council before the law is published in the EU Official Journal and enter into force.

The approved measures include:

• packaging reduction targets (5% by 2030, 10% by 2035 and 15% by 2040) and require EU countries to reduce the amount of packaging waste,
• reuse targets for grouped, sales, transport incl. e-commerce packaging (while cardboard boxes are exempted),
• reuse targets for alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverage packaging, except for milk, wine, aromatised wine, and spirits,
• ban of single use plastic packaging formats, e.g. mini hotel toiletries, food & beverages consumed in premises, miniatures cosmetics, fruits and vegetables below1,5kg,
• ban of lightweight plastic carrier bags,
• restrictions of substances of concern,
• minimisation of packaging,
• harmonised labelling,
• maximum empty space ratio of 50% is set for grouped, sales, transport and e-commerce packaging,
• Moreover, they establish minimum recycled content targets for sales plastic packaging and minimum recycling targets based on the weight of packaging waste.

FEFCO and its members will now stand ready to further cooperate with the European Commission and other stakeholders to elaborate secondary legislation and prepare for the implementation. This will enable a smooth transition while preserving sustainable packaging industries, such as corrugated cardboard, safeguarding competitiveness and harmonising the internal market.
Furthermore, FEFCO takes note of Commissioner Virginijus Sinkevičius's clarification on the upcoming legislative assessment of transport packaging, particularly related to mandatory reuse target exemption for pallets’ plastic wrappers and straps.

Eleni Despotou said: “FEFCO welcomes the adoption of the text at the plenary of the European Parliament and looking forward to its final approval by the Council without delays. The corrugated cardboard packaging is a unique example of circularity, and FEFCO member companies are dedicated to further improving the sustainability of packaging systems in the European Union”.