Spring 2024

Introduction by the managing director

Introduction by the Managing Director

Dear Esteemed Readers,

We hope this EXPRA Newsletter finds you in good health and high spirits.

The spring season has drawn to a close with remarkable activity for EXPRA and its esteemed members, marked by pivotal events and focused priorities.

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EXPRA news

Packaging Waste and Sustainability Forum 2024

The Packaging Waste Sustainability Forum 2024, Europe’s premier packaging conference, provided a comprehensive platform for stakeholders to explore sustainability from policy to production and from materials to waste management. This year’s event featured significant contributions from EXPRA members and partners, showcasing innovative approaches to sustainable packaging and waste management.

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EXPRA at the PPWR Implementation Event: Key Insights and Future Outlook

Yesterday, our Regulatory and Public Affairs Manager at EXPRA, Monika Romenska, had the privilege to speak on the first panel, "A Closer Look at the Implementation of PPWR." This panel discussion was part of an event organized by Citeo in partnership with The Parliament and PROsPA in Brussels, focusing on advancing the circular economy.

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Upcoming events

News updates

Relaunching European Competitiveness – A Joint European Industry Manifesto

European and national industry associations are making a united call to prevent the risk of de-industrialisation on our continent by relaunching Europe’s competitiveness.
The EU enters a new policy cycle at a challenging time, with technology and geopolitics acting as global disruptors, adding pressure to an already difficult economic situation. Now is the time to start building a strategic plan that unlocks the Single Market’s full potential and establishes a regulatory environment for EU industry to remain globally competitive.

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Waste framework directive: Council set to start talks on its revision

The Council adopted its position (‘general approach’) on the targeted revision of the waste framework directive, with a focus on food and textile waste.
"The general approach aims to prevent waste from fast fashion and to facilitate re-use. It also sets ambitious targets to significantly reduce food waste by 2030. Given the food and textile sectors are the first and the fourth most resource-intensive respectively, today's agreement represents a crucial step towards a more sustainable and circular European economy"

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2024 European election results

The European Parliament elections (9-11 June 2024) marked a notable shift to the right, with populist and far-right parties securing up to 25% of the seats. The centre-right European People's Party (EPP) remains the largest group, while the influence of the Socialists and Liberals has diminished. Major gains for the far-right were observed in France and Germany, significantly impacting national politics, with Macron calling for a general election. Ursula von der Leyen is expected to seek a second term as Commission President, but forming a stable pro-European majority will be challenging. The election results indicate a stronger pro-business agenda but also increased challenges for multinationals navigating the new political landscape

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The fourth session of the INC to develop an international legally binding instrument on plastic pollution

The fourth session of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee to develop an international legally binding instrument on plastic pollution, including in the marine environment (INC-4), took place from 23 to 29 April 2024 at the Shaw Center in Ottawa, Canada.

The session was preceded by regional consultations on 21 April 2024.

The Revised draft text of the international legally binding instrument on plastic pollution, including in the marine environment (UNEP/PP/INC.4/3) is available in all six UN official languages.

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European Parliament Takes First Step: Adoption of the Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation (PPWR) on April 24, 2024

After years of assessments, discussions, stakeholder meetings, and extensive trilogue consultations, the European Parliament adopted the Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation (PPWR) at its first reading on April 24, 2024. This regulation is designed to facilitate the transition to a circular economy. Once fully implemented, the PPWR will replace the existing Packaging Directive 94/62/EC.

The PPWR represents a profound shift in how packaging is regulated within the European Union, aiming to harmonize the Union’s internal market for packaging (Art. 1(2) PPWR). It will encompass a wide array of packaging types used in production, importation, distribution, and inter-company logistics across the EU, impacting millions of businesses and citizens.

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News from members

News from CONAI: New General Manager taking over

Simona Fontana is the new general manager of CONAI, taking over from Walter Facciotto, who leaves the leadership of the consortium after fourteen years. Fabio Costarella assumes the position of Deputy Director-General. The new organisational structure will come into force on 1 April.

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Towards a more social: Fostplus Activity Report 2023

2023 marks the last year of the recognition period that began in 2019. For Fost Plus, it is a transition year, with a number of important objectives that had to be achieved and results that will serve as the basis for the ambitions for the next five years. The local circular economy, with the blue bag as the cornerstone, is now really taking shape. With another increase in recycling percentages, Belgium confirms its leading position. At the same time, ecological awareness continues to permeate all layers of society.

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Celebrate 30 Years of Fost Plus Success: June 4, 2024, Wavre, Belgium

On the 4th of June 2024, Fost Plus, cherished founding member of the EXPRA family, celebrated its 30th anniversary with a grand event at La Sucrerie in Wavre, Belgium, under the theme "Mind the Circularity Gap".
Over the past three decades, Fost Plus has played a key role in driving the transition to a circular economy through its unwavering commitment to building a system aimed at closing material cycles.

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News from EKOPAK: Ekopak exceeded the prescribed recycling targets in 2023.

In accordance with Article 26 of the Regulation on Packaging and Packaging Waste Management of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ekopak submitted its "Annual Report on Packaging and Packaging Waste Management for the Year 2023" to the Federal Ministry of Environment and Tourism and the Environmental Protection Fund of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
In 2023, through a network of collectors from all 10 cantons of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ekopak recycled nearly 18,000 tons of packaging waste, thus meeting its annual target.

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Ecoembes: Recycling of household plastic, metal, brick, paper and cardboard packaging grew 3.5% in 2023

Last year, 1,683,890 tons of these containers were recycled, turning them into new raw materials used to manufacture products such as textiles, pipes, urban furniture, or new containers. 73% of these tons came from separate collection in more than 650,000 yellow and blue containers on the streets and the 57,000 recycling points located in high-traffic areas. The recycling of these containers prevented the emission of 1.7 million tons of CO2 into the atmosphere.

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Circular Materials: Ontario’s Transition to EPR Nears One-year Milestone

Technological Advancements and Strategic Innovations Set to Revolutionize the Recycling Experience Across Ontario by 2026:
Building on achievements in 2023, July 1, 2024, will mark the one-year milestone since Circular Materials, a national not-for-profit producer-led organization, kick-started Ontario’s transition to extended producer responsibility (EPR) for packaging and paper material – the first step towards enhanced recycling across the province.

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News from Valipac & Fost Plus: With ROUND, nine EPR organizations join forces for a more circular economy

In a world where sustainability and circularity are becoming increasingly important, ROUND now plays a key role. This new Belgian alliance of nine Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) organizations is fully committed to more efficient and environmentally friendly management of resources. 'In 2022, we collectively collected and repurposed nearly 1.6 million tons of materials and packaging,' says chairman Francis Huysman

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News from New Zealand- The Packaging Forum: Soft plastic recycling returns to Invercargill

Soft plastics in the deep south are hoped to no longer be heading to landfill as collection sites are introduced at The Warehouse and Woolworths.
The Packaging Forum announced the scheme’s arrival in Invercargill and Gore this week in the hopes of bringing new life to the items, rather than discarding them in the rubbish.
It’s a national scheme that takes all soft plastic bags including bread bags, frozen food bags, chip packets - anything plastics that can be scrunched into a ball - to be recycled into new products.

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