Home 9 News 9 EU Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation (PPWR) adopted by European Parliament

EU Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation (PPWR) adopted by European Parliament

The European Parliament adopted the Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation (PPWR) on the 24th of April 2024, with the final text expected to enter into force towards the end of 2024.

Once implemented, it will replace the EU Packaging Directive 94/62/EC and will significantly change how we design, consume, and dispose of packaging in the EU.

The PPWR aims to create a more sustainable packaging industry in Europe, reducing environmental impact and promoting resource efficiency. It is part of the EU’s broader strategy to transition towards a circular economy and achieve climate neutrality.


Key objectives of the packaging and packaging waste regulation

The main goals of the PPWR are to reduce the generation of packaging waste, promote recycling, and support the circular economy. Key aspects include:

  • Reduction of packaging waste
    • Encouraging reduction in the quantity of materials used
    • Promoting reusable packaging solutions
  • Recycling and recovery
    • Establishing recycling targets for different types of packaging
    • Ensuring packaging is designed to be easily recyclable
  • Extended producer responsibility (EPR)
    • Making producers responsible for the entire lifecycle of their packaging
    • Producers may need to contribute to costs associated with the management and recycling of packaging waste
  • Consumer information and awareness
    • Ensuring clear labelling to inform consumers about the recyclability and proper disposal methods of packaging
    • Raising awareness among consumers of the importance of reducing, reusing, and recycling packaging materials
  • Harmonisation and standardisation
    • Developing EU-wide standards and regulations to ensure a consistent approach to packaging and waste management
    • Encouraging innovation in packaging design to improve sustainability
  • Monitoring and enforcement
    • Collecting data on packaging waste generation and recycling rates to monitor progress and enforce compliance
    • Implementing penalties for non-compliance

Recycling and waste reduction targets

The Directive sets the following specific targets for recycling:

Packaging type Current targets By 2025 By 2030
All 55% 65% 70%
Plastic 25% 50% 55%
Wood 15% 25% 30%
Ferrous metals 50% (incl. Al) 70% 80%
Aluminium 50% 60%
Glass 60% 70% 75%
Paper & cardboard 60% 75% 85%


The regulation also includes specific targets to reduce overall packaging waste by 5% by 2030, 10% by 2035, and 15% by 2040. It also aims to decrease plastic packaging by 10% by 2030, 15% by 2035, and 20% by 2040.


Compostable packaging

Packaging such as sticky labels attached to fruit and vegetables and very lightweight plastic carrier bags must be compostable in industrially controlled conditions in bio-waste treatment facilities.

Where suitable waste collection and treatment infrastructure is in place, Member States may mandate that all lightweight carrier bags entering the market for the first time be made entirely from biodegradable plastic polymers that are compostable under industrially controlled conditions.

Additionally, packaging other than the above (including packaging made of biodegradable plastic polymers) must allow material recycling without affecting the recyclability of other waste streams.


Food contact packaging

The regulation introduces a ban on certain “forever chemicals” like PFAS and Bisphenol A (BPA) in food-contact packaging, and promotes the use of reusable and refillable packaging, especially in the food service sector.


How we can help

Eurofins offer a variety of services designed to support your sustainability goals.

For information on the services we can offer within the packaging industry, check out our Sustainable Paper and Packaging page.

You can also find information about PFAS, biodegradability, and compostability tests on our services page. Alternatively, you can contact our sustainability services team for more information.

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