APEAL applauds formal approval for PPWR’s enhanced recyclability measures

Written on: May 22, 2024 by SprayTM

APEAL, the Association of European Producers of Steel for Packaging, has welcomed the stricter recyclability measures endorsed by the formal adoption of the Packaging & Packaging Waste Regulation (PPWR) voted by the European Parliament (EP) in Strasbourg, France, on April 24.

The final list of measures aims at reducing the amount of packaging waste generated in the EU and promoting higher rates of recycling.

APEAL particularly welcomes the establishment of design for recycling criteria, applicable to all packaging, and the introduction of packaging recyclability performance grades, differentiating between packaging categories, by 2030.

The introduction of a performance-grading system with clear criteria is the first of its kind. This is an essential measure to ensure packaging materials are designed for recycling, but also to ensure they are effectively collected, sorted and recycled at scale.

The three grades of defined recyclability percentages—A, B, C (95%/80%/70%)—to comply with by 2030 and two—A, B (95%/80%)—by 2038 is poised to drive innovation. Steel for Packaging, with all formats graded A or B, demonstrates superior performance compared to competing materials such as plastics and laminated cartons.

APEAL is also pleased that the eco-modulation of fees based on the recyclability performance grades has been adopted. This measure recognizes the value of permanent materials and rewards materials such as steel, that can be recycled multiple times and feed into a closed material loop scheme.

“We appreciate the strides taken and congratulate all the European Institutions for their foresight and efforts in adopting the final legislation,” said Steve Claus, APEAL Secretary General.

“However, we would have liked to see a more explicit recognition of permanently recycled materials such as steel in design for recycling criteria at this stage,” Claus admitted.

“We look forward to further dialogue with the EU institutions regarding setting the criteria for design for recycling per each grade.”

Metka Cavka Luciani, Head of EU Affairs, stated, “We agree with the requirement that all packaging needs to be recyclable, but regret that it comes into effect only after 2030.

“We would have wished a greater legal push towards the materials that can be recycled multiple times without loss of quality,” she added.

“The quality of recycling still poses issues for many other materials, leading to resource inefficiencies.”

As the model material for a circular economy, with 78,5% recycled in 2021, steel is ideally positioned to help the EU transition to a more circular and environmentally conscious future. APEAL reaffirms its commitment to collaborate with all relevant stakeholders on the implementation of the regulation to achieve these objectives.