Circular Materials

Canada

Circular Materials is a producer responsibility organization (PRO) committed to supporting producers in meeting their recycling regulation requirements. They design recycling systems that advance innovation, deliver improved environmental outcomes and harness competitive procurement to unlock value for our producer members.
Circular Materials aims to create efficient and effective recycling systems. They are a national not-for-profit producer responsibility organization that represents the evolution to a more circular economy where materials are collected, recycled and returned to producers for use as recycled content in new products and packaging
Founders: Circular Materials was founded by 17 of Canada’s leading food, beverage and consumer products manufacturers, restaurants and retailers.

System Description

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Extended producer responsibility (EPR) is a policy approach to recycling in which producers/stewards – the organizations that supply packaging and paper – are financially responsible and accountable for those materials over their full life cycle. By meeting EPR requirements, producers/stewards help to drive a circular economy by improving recycling rates and encouraging a more efficient use of materials.

Circular Materials currently operates as a producer responsibility organization (PRO) in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Ontario, Alberta and Yukon and supports EPR programs in Manitoba (Multi-Material Stewardship Manitoba), Saskatchewan (Multi-Material Stewardship Western) and British Columbia (Recycle BC).

Circular Materials’ Producer Guide provides information to assist producers across Canada with registration, annual reporting of supplied materials and the payment of annual fees. This updated online Guide replaces and consolidates information in previous guidebooks. Please note that some Guide content is only available to registered producers. Log in with your WeRecycle Portal credentials to access all content.

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Notice: This Guide has been created for the convenience of producers/stewards. Every effort is made by Circular Materials staff to provide producers/stewards with accurate guidance. However, please note the following: this document does not constitute legal advice. In the event of a discrepancy between the information in this Guide and a program’s legal documents, including legislation, guidance from regulators, the applicable program’s approved packaging and paper plan, program Rules, Policies or Membership Agreements (collectively the “program’s legal documents”) are binding on producers/stewards and take precedence over the information in this Guide.

Communication activities

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Circular Materials’ knowledge base provides information and guides for producers/stewards and service providers. Learn more about knowledge base here. For the main Circular Materials website, please visit CircularMaterials.ca.

Prevention

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Principles of extended producer responsibility programs

The following principles contribute to effective extended producer responsibility programs.

Standardized lists

A standardized list of collected materials for recycling in the province (and across the country if possible) achieves economies of scale and program efficiencies, while providing clarity for residents. 

Producer autonomy 

Producers must have the autonomy to design a recycling system that respects local conditions (such as geography, population densities, etc.) while maximizing efficiency and optimizing environmental performance. 

Regulatory fairness 

Regulations must be designed for fairness. All obligated producers need to participate and regulators must be prepared to take appropriate enforcement action to support compliance with the regulation. 

Material value 

Materials must pay their own way in the recycling system. Higher-value materials should not cross-subsidize lower-value materials.  

Accountability 

Producer responsibility program operators and service providers are held accountable, meaning that operators, collectors, transporters, recyclers and processors of end-of-life products/materials are auditable and accountable for their performance. 

Standards 

Appropriate standards are established so that collectors, transporters, recyclers and processors can demonstrate their compliance with international, federal and provincial laws and industry standards where applicable. 

Continuous improvement 

A commitment to continuous improvement and fostering responsible recycling helps achieve higher recycling rates over time. 

Contact

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Address: 700-1 St. Clair Ave. West,
Toronto, ON M4V 1K6
E-mail: info@circularmaterials.ca 
Phone number: 877-667-2626