The European legal framework for packaging products is mainly based on the European Parliament and Council Directive 94/62/EC of 20 December 1994 on packaging and packaging waste (PPWD) and to a lesser extent, on the “Waste Framework Directive” (2006/12/EC).

The directive contains provisions on the prevention of packaging waste, on the re-use of packaging and on the recovery and recycling of packaging waste. The PPWD has played an important role in developing efficient recycling and recovery schemes throughout Europe and paving the way towards an internal market for packaging and packaging waste in the European Union. It originally came into force in 1994 with a first amendment in 2004.  A new amendment will be proposed later this year.

Circular Economy Package

The European Union is increasingly looking into possibilities within its policies to enable Europe to move nearer to a Circular economy, meaning an economy where products are designed and optimized for a cycle of reuse and recycling and waste does not exist. The core of this approach is the flagship initiative for a resource-efficient Europe under the ‘Europe 2020 strategy’, supporting the shift towards a resource-efficient economy in order to achieve sustainable growth. The Packaging & Packaging Waste Directive (PPWD) will play an important role in the Circular Economy package proposal as it sets, for example, the packaging recycling targets that European member states will have to achieve in the years to come.

Steel for Packaging

APEAL has taken an active role in the current European discussion and given input on behalf of the Steel for Packaging industry to the European Commission’s consultations.

APEAL encourages the European institutions to:

recognise the positive role of infinitely recyclable “Permanent materials” such as steel in society and their fundamental contribution to both waste prevention and sustainable resource use;

focus on integrated waste management systems to reach optimal recycling solutions,ensuring that society as a whole takes responsibility through the implementation of a national waste management strategy;

recognise the environmental benefits of “material to material” or “true” recycling and how this is different from “downcycling” and other recovery operations.