Disclaimer: The information contained in the guide below is intended to facilitate your understanding of the main provisions of the European Union Packaging Regulations 2014 and should not be taken as a legal interpretation.
The European Union Packaging Regulations 2014 promote the recovery of specified packaging waste. The Regulations impose obligations on all producers, including manufacturers, importers, distributors, wholesalers and retailers, who in the course of business supply packaging to the Irish market.
These Regulations came into effect on the 20th June 2014 and replaced all preceding Packaging Regulations.
Under these Regulations, all producers must not supply packaging unless the packaging complies with the requirements of the "Essential Requirements".
The "Essential Requirements" have been designed specifically to reduce the environmental impact of packaging and to avoid over-packaging:
Refer to the Fourth Schedule of the Regulations for more information on the essential requirements.
The Regulations impose obligations on all Producers who in the course of their business supply packaging to the Irish market.
All Producers of packaging are obliged to separate it at source into specific waste streams (aluminium, fibreboard, glass, paper, plastic sheeting, steel and wood) and to arrange for its recovery, or return the used packaging to the Supplier, if applicable.
"Supply" means providing any packaging, packaging material or packaged products in the course of business, in exchange for any consideration including money or giving as a prize or gift. It also includes any packaging removed from a product by or on behalf of the Producer, either at the point of sale or immediately preceding the point of sale, or at the point of delivery or immediately preceding the point of delivery.
The Regulations place obligations on "Producers" and "Major Producers" of packaging.
A Producer is a person who in the course of business supplies packaging material to the Irish market.
A Producer is required to segregate waste on-site for recycling/recovery purposes.
Your company is a "Major Producer" of packaging if you had a turnover of more than €1m in the preceding calendar year, based on audited accounts, and you supply more than 10 tonnes of packaging on the Irish market per annum.
Additional obligations are placed on Major Producers including the requirement to either register with Cork City Council or with the compliance scheme Repak.
You will need to have an audit carried out to accurately measure the weight of packaging supplied. The audit must be carried out by a Competent Person.
A Competent Person may be one of the following:
Cork City Council has pre-approved the following list of Competent Persons (click on link below):
Should you wish to nominate/engage a Competent Person for the preparation of the packaging report outside of this list, please contact the Waste Enforcement Section, Cork City Council in advance for written approval of same.
Remember: This issue is only relevant if your turnover was more than €1m in the preceding calendar year.
You can become a "Self-Complier" by registering with Cork City Council, if your premise is within its administrative area.
You can join the compliance scheme Repak.
Importers/Pack-fillers are obliged to accept/collect specified weights of packaging each quarter.
Repak is an approved body under the Regulations. If you choose to become a Repak member, you will be required to pay an annual fee. In return, you will be discharged from the obligations placed on Self-compliers, including the requirement to take back packaging waste.
Contact details for Repak are provided below:
Repak Ltd., Redcow Interchange Estate, 1 Ballymount Road, Dublin 22.
Tel: 01-4670190 Fax: 01 - 4670197
You must provide evidence to Cork City Council to support your claim. Examples include:
(Remember: You do not need to undertake a Packaging Audit if you can demonstrate that your turnover in the preceding calendar year was €1m or less).
Failure to comply with these Regulations is an offence and can result in a fine and/or prosecution. A person found guilty of an offence shall be liable:
A copy of the Regulations can be found at the following link:
Cork City Council is responsible for enforcing the legislation within its functional area and must ensure that every business is in full compliance. It has general powers to inspect all business premises, and other powers such as the power to request any relevant documentation or a Packaging Report.
For the most up-to-date registration forms or further information on your obligations under these Regulations please contact:
Waste Enforcement Section,
Cork City Council,