Packaging and the environment
By considering the environment at the design stage you can reduce the cost of your packaging and minimise its impact on the environment. You can also make your product more appealing to consumers who prefer recyclable packaging or packaging from renewable sources. Read a guide to packaging design for the environment on the Envirowise website (registration required) - Opens in a new window.
You must ensure that the packaging you use complies with environmental regulations. The weight and volume of the packaging must be the minimum necessary, and the packaging must be recoverable by recycling, incineration or composting. There are also limits on the level of heavy metals that can be present in packaging. Read guidance on the Packaging (Essential Requirements) Regulations on the NetRegs website - Opens in a new window.
You also have a duty of care for the waste you produce. The regulations require businesses to ensure that their waste is handled and disposed of or recycled safely. You can read guidance on the duty of care for waste on the NetRegs website - Opens in a new window.
Businesses with a turnover of over £2 million who handle more than 50 tonnes of packaging must also comply with the Producer Responsibility Obligations (Packaging Waste) Regulations. You can find guidance on the Producer Responsibility Obligations (Packaging Waste) Regulations on the NetRegs website - Opens in a new window.
For more detailed information on packaging and your environmental responsibilities see our guide on packing and the environment - the basics.
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