Europen offers guidance on packaging standards

A European trade association offers a free pamphlet explaining the implications to business of forthcoming standards on packaging and the environment.

New European standards for packaging which will have an impact on the businesses of every sector of the packaging chain, from raw material producers to end users of packaging, are on course to be adopted in the coming twelve months.

To help business understand the implications of these changes, EUROPEN, The European Organization for Packaging and the Environment, has issued a free pamphlet entitled Understanding the Draft CEN Harmonised Standards on Packaging and the Environment. It explains, in simple terms, how the standards have been designed so that they can be incorporated into a management system approach in order to ensure continuous effort to reduce the environmental impacts of packaging.

“Many packaging industry people were aware that the work was in process but few have really been close enough to the process to grasp exactly what the standards are about or the reasons for them” said Julian Carroll, EUROPEN’s Managing Director. “Our pamphlet is intended to take the mystery out of the subject and provide a clear understanding of how the Standards are intended to work.”

The ten-page publication includes an introduction to the concept of the standards, how they fit in with the EU Directive’s Essential Requirements, a section answering frequently asked questions and a description and summary of each of the six principal standards.

The EU Directive on Packaging and Packaging waste contains Essential Requirements to which all packaging in Europe has been required to conform since January 1998. However member states are only now beginning to enforce compliance due to the delay by many of them in adopting the Directive into national law.

In the lead are France, which has already adopted a Decree demanding compliance of all packaging with the Essential Requirements and the UK, which has passed a Regulation for the same purpose. Other EU member states are variously preparing to follow suit as required by European law.

The European Commission mandated CEN, the European Standards Committee to prepare the Standards as a means of demonstrating compliance with the Essential Requirements of the Directive.

The pamphlet is available in English, French or German.

For a free copy contact EUROPEN by fax on: +32 2 736 3521 or e-mail giving name, postal address and language choice.
For further information contact Julian Carroll Tel: +32-2 736 3600.

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