Radical change in responsibility for packaging waste in Spain

by Lorraine Williamson
packaging waste

Plastics and chemicals sector Envalora’s new Spanish collective system of extended producer responsibility predicts a “radical change” in companies’ packaging waste policies.

Envalora stated this following the publication in the Official Gazette (BOE) of the Royal Decree on packaging approved by the Spanish Council of Ministers on Tuesday.  

Under the new Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) regime, companies are now responsible for the financing and final management of the industrial and commercial packaging they put on the market. This means that both the responsibility for financing and managing packaging waste will no longer lie with the end consumer, but will be shifted to packaging and importing companies. 

What does the Royal Decree entail? 

The new Royal Decree transfers this responsibility from the end customers to the packaging and importing companies. This concerns both Spanish and foreign companies that use industrial and commercial packaging to transport and sell their goods in the Spanish market. his has cost implications and imposes significant new organisational requirements on companies. 

Moreover, the regulation provides for the registration of data on packaging placed on the market and compliance with recycling and reuse targets in the packaging register to be set up within the Ministry of Ecological Transition. 

For Envalora, this is a “very important new obligation” because of its broad scope and a radical change. Furthermore, it concerns all companies that use industrial and commercial packaging to transport and sell products to their customers in Spain.  

More about Envalora 

Envalora is a new collective system for industrial and commercial packaging in the chemical, plastics, rubber and construction sectors, as well as other sectors such as metal, graphic arts and automotive parts. Envalora coordinator Isabel Goyena warned that the new deadlines for compliance with the new extended producer responsibility obligations are ‘very short’, as the new collective systems must be operational by 31 December 2024. ‘There is no time to lose,’ Goyena said. 

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