Disposable plastic ban is coming - how to become fully 'SUP-proof'?
- By Wouter Moekotte
- Jan 19, 2021
Two years ago we commented in a blog article on the upcoming European ban on single-use plastics. As of July 3, 2021, new measures by the European Commission (EC) will enter into force that prohibit the use of single-use plastic to reduce the plastic soup. This prohibition is summarized under the "Single Use Plastic Directive" (SUP), an EU directive that bans the most polluting single-use plastic products. For a large part of these articles, Bio Futura has been offering only sustainable alternatives for more than a decade already.
Additionally, further measures are currently being developed by the national government to contribute to an improved recycling infrastructure and consumer awareness by providing information about reusable alternatives. With our specialist knowledge and tailor-made advice, we help our customers to facilitate the transition to products and (compostable) packaging made from renewable raw materials. We will ensure that you meet all measures and requirements on time. Simultaneously, we are still relentless in our focus on delivering sustainable quality at every stage of our value chain.
Which concrete measures are involved?
We will briefly list the most important measures from the SUP directive, as they are expected to come into force for:
Catering businesses, retailers, producers and consumers - The following consumer single-use plastic products will no longer be sold from July 3: plastic cutlery (knives, forks, spoons), plates, straws, stirrers for beverages, food and beverage packaging made of polystyrene foam (EPS) that can be drunk or eaten directly from, such as coffee cups and hamburger boxes. In addition, all products made from oxo-degradable plastics (regular plastics that fragment into miniscule particles = microplastics). From all the products above, Bio Futura is supplying a multitude of sustainable alternatives.
Catering businesses and retailers - single-use plastics, e.g. food and drink packaging, may no longer be given away for free. This applies to, for example, coffee cups, salad bowls and soup bowls. Similar to the Plastic Bags Directive, consumers will have to pay extra for all single-use plastics.
Producers - Producers are required to provide advice to consumers on the disposal of disposable beverage cups. Moreover, producers will be responsible for the costs of awareness raising measures and the costs of gatherings waste for the specific plastic items that are discarded in the public collection system. This includes its infrastructure, operation and subsequent transport and treatment of waste. For some products producers would also be responsible for the costs of waste collection.
Consumers - Member states of the EU / the government will take measures to inform consumers and to incentivise responsible consumer behaviour, the impact of littering and other inappropriate waste disposal, in order to reduce litter from products covered by the SUP. Furthermore, consumers will be informed about the availability of re-usable alternatives, re-use systems and waste management options for those single-use plastic products.
This comprehensive set of measures in the SUP is based on a draft decision of the EC, published last June 2020. Preparatory work on the directive has been delayed at the EU level, which, in turn, has hampered its implementation in the Member States. The directive should be passed into legislation by 3 July 2021.
"Plastic pandemic" - why it is important to wait no longer and become SUP proof now
A startling development, plastic use has been on the rise again in the last year. Due to the corona crisis, the demand for plastic products, including all kinds of packaging, has increased enormously. If we are not careful the corona pandemic can lead to a "plastic pandemic". Fortunately, despite intense pressure and lobbying efforts from the plastics industry, the EC does not seem to deviate from the SUP directive. Nevertheless, we can not ignore that the pandemic has led to a global surge in plastic pollution from disposable products, such as, face masks, gloves and hand sanitizer bottles. As a sustainable packaging company, it is more important than ever to provide sustainable choices and make all businesses SUP-proof.
SUPer-proof packaging range from Bio Futura
Our SUP-proof range will be adapted and expanded in the near future, hence, we can offer our customers even more sustainable alternatives and packaging solutions for single use plastic in the near future. For example, we recently added a reusable "Durables line" to our range. In addition, we are happy to help our customers to get more clarity about the SUP guidelines and SUP-proof alternatives that we can offer you. Do you have any questions or would you like to receive advice about the possibilities without any obligation? Please feel free to contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.