New European rules for the calculation of rPET in single-use beverage bottles

EU Implementing Decision 2023/2683 laying down rules for the implementation of Directive (EU) 2019/904 of the European Parliament and of the Council as regards the calculation, verification and reporting of data on the content of recycled plastic in single-use plastic drink bottles. 

This decision shall enter into force on the third day following its publication in the Official Journal of the European Union. The executive decision was approved on 17.10.2023 in the competent body 'Waste Technical Adaptation Committee' with 18 votes in favor and 7 abstentions 

We note the following new definitions: 

"post-consumer plastic waste": waste, as defined in Article 3(1) of Directive 2008/98/EC, consisting of plastic and produced from plastic products placed on the market; 

"recycled plastic": plastic which, prior to recycling as defined in Article 3 point 17 of Directive 2008/98/EC, was post-consumer plastic waste and which has been produced by recycling 

Article 7 provides that by March 31, 2024, the Commission will propose an amendment to this decision, in which recycled plastic resulting from additional types of recycling, such as chemical recycling, is taken into account. 

According to the European market placement principle imported recycled plastic - in this case rPET, which is not made from waste products placed on the EU market, would not count towards the national targets and could not be defined as recycled plastic in the framework of the legislation. 

Therefore, bottling companies cannot label bottles as made from recycled plastic if that recycled plastic is produced outside the EU. According to the interpretation of the decision, drinks, waters and soft drinks bottled outside the European market also cannot carry the claim of recycled content and as such cannot be traded in the EU. 

According to the Greek legislation 4736/2020, for the bottles of beverages listed in Part VI of Annex I, including water, the following applies: 

From 1st January 2025, beverage bottles manufactured from polyethylene terephthalate as a primary construction material ("PET bottles") must contain at least twenty-five percent (25%) recycled plastic, calculated as an average of all PET bottles produced are marketed, 

The above percentages are also applied to each producer individually, calculated as an average for all PET bottles or for all beverage bottles available on the market, as the case may be. 

The new decision sets strict conditions to protect the consumer from misleading claims and additionally shields the single European market from massive imports of low-quality rPET that often lack the necessary certifications and may endanger public health. 

All News / Posts