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Recycling 'fees' in Europe may change

In the wake of various mandates for beverage packaging in several European countries, the next steps in recycling regulation will apply to all packaging, according to Recycling Laws International, a new newsletter from Raymond Communications (Riverdale, MD).

The European Union's new packaging Directive "will apply to all packaging-including medical flexible and transport packaging" says David Perchard RLI's European editor. "The EU will consider exemptions and industry will have to make its case. But if your package gets [an exemption] individual countries can still regulate [your package] on their own." RLI shows the disparity in existing packaging fees. Packaging fees for paper in Germany are $255/ton compared to $28.50/ton in Belgium. Plastic ranges from $45/ton in France to $1.50/ton in Germany. And this is today. When the other 10-plus countries in the EU respond to the directive each could have its own system with differing requirements.

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