gordons llp retail business lawyers

Does My Business Need to Worry about Handling Packaging?

Monday 12th February 2018

If your business produces packaging, uses packaging or sells packaged goods then it may have regulatory obligations under the Producer Responsibility Obligations (Packaging Waste) Regulations 2007.

‘Packaging’ is defined as any material used to hold, protect, handle, deliver and present goods. Common examples include: wooden pallets, cardboard boxes, plastic wrapping, tape for wrapping and clothes hangers sold as part of the clothing item.

Your business will have obligations under the Regulations if it handles 50 tonnes or more of packaging in a calendar year and it has a turnover of more than £2 million. If your business is part of a group of companies then it is the annual aggregate amount of packaging handled and turnover which is used to determine if you have obligations.

Further, if your business enters into franchising arrangements with other companies then any packaging they handle may contribute towards the 50 tonne threshold for your business.

Between January and August 2017 the Environment Agency accepted 24 Enforcement Undertakings from businesses who breached the Regulations by failing to register and/or failed to take reasonable steps to recover and recycle packaging waste. The financial contributions of those Enforcement Undertakings totalled more than £850,000.

We can help you determine if you need to register and, if you do, help you though that process.

For further information, please visit our Regulatory & Compliance page.