According to FEAD this proposal, as acknowledged in the report, will encourage the creation of a steady market for recyclates, and will ensure a more circular use of plastics. It is a key measure in shifting away from the ever increasing production of single-use use plastic bottles, while recyclable ones do not follow the same trend. Collecting up to 90% plastic bottles in 2025, as proposed in the Directive, is a welcomed first step but will not be enough to steer the plastic markets towards less single-use bottles. Designing recyclable packaging items is necessary to facilitate recycling, and a strong signal is needed to boost both the offer of recyclable plastics and the demand of recycled plastics. The European Parliament’s report to include at least 35% of recycled plastics in beverage containers is a crucial first step in this direction, and we fully support its inclusion in the legal text.
Indeed, up to € 10 billion worth of investments will be needed in our sector to innovate and expand the separate collection, sorting and recycling capacity, for all plastics, at EU level. Our industry is prepared to make the necessary investments if there are legislative measures ensuring a significant uptake of plastic recyclates; which is becoming even more necessary by the minute in view of the Chinese ban on imports of certain waste streams. Transforming the vision of a new plastics economy into reality will require joined efforts throughout the entire plastics value chain.
FEAD hopes that the ENVI Committee’s positive vote of October 10 will result in an equally favourable vote on October 23 during the plenary session when the time comes for all MEPs to decide if they want mandatory recycled content in plastic bottles to be part of their legacy. This is the European Parliament’s last opportunity to act before the end of their mandate: if not now, the EU will lose at least 3 years!