Last year Government announced all packaging producers, brand owners, and manufacturers to register with the Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment (DFFE) as a member of an approved Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) Scheme or Producer Responsibility Organisation (PRO) has passed.
In an effort to help encourage recycling and the establishment of a circular economy in South Africa, the DFFE published the final EPR regulations which became effective as from 5 May 2021. These regulations give all producers a period of six months to register and pay the relevant EPR fee or alternately, set up its own scheme.
In addition, all obliged producers needed to register with the DFFE by 4 November 2021 –http://sawic.environment.gov.za/epr/regindex.php
“The implementation of a mandatory EPR scheme will require every glass packaging producer to be accountable for the end-of-life impact of its products and packaging,” says Shabeer Jhetam, CEO of The Glass Recycling Company (TGRC).
Setting up an EPR scheme is a daunting task even for businesses with the scale, capabilities and resources to do so, and it will be very challenging for companies to comply within the very limited time left before the deadline becomes effective.
“It is in fact, one of the main reasons for the existence of producer responsibility organisations (PROs) and recycling packaging organisations, namely, to address the majority of its members’ EPR compliance requirements,” adds Jhetam.
In fact, The Glass Recycling Company is a long-existing PRO with a 15-year long record of success and impact, representing and collaborating with key industry members including well-known and loved brands importers, retailers and glass packaging manufacturers.
“TGRC encourages new members to join the organisation as soon as possible to comply with the EPR regulations for glass packaging,’ concludes Jhetam.