BHETA highlights EPR challenge as supplier costs could rise tenfold

In September, BHETA is hosting two webinars on Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) (packaging sustainability) to keep BHETA members informed of the likely impact of the new packaging legislation.

EPR is set to be launched in the UK in 2024 and will have a significant impact on all supplier companies. EPR is currently forecast to increase packaging PRN costs by between eight to ten times. Under current proposals, the burden of paying for recycling for branded products will move from general taxation, retailers and suppliers predominantly to suppliers.

The two events are a presentation from BHETA service provider and packaging legislation expert, Wastepack and a follow up from Toolstation on the impact for suppliers and retailers thus far. The Toolstation webinar will also address the practical steps this key retailer will require suppliers to undertake as the new rules are now only a year or so away.

Paul Van Danzig, Policy Director at Wastepack will outline all the supplier implications of EPR on Tuesday 13th September at 2:00pm. On Thursday 15 September at 10.00 am, Paul Field, Toolstation Quality Assurance Manager, will talk about the current industry ‘hot topic’ of packaging efficiency and the looming “Extended Producer Responsibility” (EPR) regulations proposed by Defra for implementation in 2024.

The Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) is a total overhaul of the current PRN system and will involve the most significant change to Packaging Regulations for a generation. EPR fees will be contingent upon the ‘recyclability’ of the material used so suppliers need to review their packaging to see if it can be removed, reduced or recycled. The reporting criteria is also set to be enhanced – possibly from 1st January 2023 – so members need to take action as soon as possible. The minimum thresholds of turnover and packaging volume for small companies will be halved, so more small companies will have to pay.

Wastepack is a BHETA business service provider and many BHETA members are part of their approved Compliance Scheme whereby they take on the legal obligations of the scheme members under the Regulations and achieve compliance on their behalf. Wastepack is registered with the Environment Agency (EA), Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA), Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA) and Natural Resources Wales (NRW), offering coverage to all UK locations.

Toolstation is one of Britain’s fastest growing suppliers of tools, accessories and building supplies to the trade, home improvers and self-builders. Toolstation is part of Travis Perkins plc and now has over 550 branches.

BHETA, Wastepack, BHETA members and retail colleagues such as Toolstation are working together to understand and inform suppliers of the full implications of EPR. These events will provide the perfect opportunity for companies not sure if they need to comply with these regulations to find out if they are affected and what they need to do about it, as well as helping to establish grounds to lobby on the fairest way forward. Following both the twenty minute presentations, attendees will have the opportunity to pose questions directly to the speakers.

BHETA’s marketing manager, Steve Richardson commented, “Sustainability is a critical topic from every point of view and packaging solutions are a big part of the solution, and of the debate. In other words it is vital for all suppliers to get packaging right for the future and this series of events, of which there will be 4 more, is an excellent way for BHETA members to ensure they are up to speed, and ideally ahead of the game.

“The content and feedback from these two sessions – as well as planned BHETA interaction with retailers on this subject – will also be critical in arming BHETA to upscale its lobbying on the best and fairest ways to achieve packaging sustainability. It is a goal we all want, but if it is to work then we all need to appreciate how best to achieve it without penalising the consumer in the process.”

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