As expected, the European Parliament voted on Wednesday to approve the report of the EU Parliament’s environment committee which means a complete ban on a range of single-use plastics, as reported by the BBC here and more widely across national media yesterday.

The ban will cover EPS packaging, plastic cutlery and plates, as well as straws and stirrers. A late amendment means member states will be required to cut out of home foodservice packaging by 25% by 2025. Legislation is being advanced much faster than is usual in the EU and it is anticipated the main features of the amended package will be published on 6 November. Brexit or otherwise, UK Government not only claims to have set the agenda but has expressed a desire to go further.


The annual UK Packaging Awards, hosted by Packaging News, were held on Tuesday evening in London.  This year three FPA members were deservedly recognised for excellence in their fields:

  • Coveris won the Award for Flexible Plastic Pack of the Year
  • Euro Packaging won the Award for Design Team of the Year
  • Rapid Action Packaging win the Award for Best New Concept

The FPA sponsored the Consumer Convenience Award which this year was won by the ‘letterbox-friendly wine bottle’ from Delivering Happiness Ltd T/A Garçon Wines.  Full details of the Award winners and the evening here here. 


The Paper Cup Recovery and Recycling Group, of which the FPA is a founder member, this week published its Two Year Progress report, with a headline increase in the recycling of paper cups from 1:400 to 1:25.

In the past 12 months the work of the PCRRG and its members have led to the following progress:

  • There are now more than 4,500 paper cup recycling points in the UK for consumers to return cups via bring banks and in-store take back schemes
  • 115 local authorities now collect paper cups with paper cartons, with more coming on stream all the time
  • 21 waste collectors are now actively participating in a national recycling scheme to increase recycling of paper cups and transport them to their reprocessing end markets, up from two last year
  • Five reprocessors are accepting paper cups including ACE UK, DS Smith, James Cropper, A Short Walk  and Veolia
  • At least nine  councils have started to include paper cups in kerbside collection schemes for householders, and that number is growing through the ACE UK programme

Neil Whittall, Chairman of the PCRRG said: “The industry can be justly proud of the progress it has made so far but of course we know that there is more work to do. Consumers are rightly demanding change and Government is keen to make that happen. However we believe that by working together we are demonstrating that industry can and will make change in a way that benefits the circular economy, protects UK manufacturing and engineering jobs and does not threaten the success of the high street.”

You can read the full report and the press release here 

BRC, The PM & Brexit

On Friday 19 October the BRC (British Retail Consortium) was party to a call with the Prime Minister and business leaders discussing Brexit.  The BRC shared their take on the call with the FPA, it provides useful insight:

Key points:

  • the PM emphasised a deal on the Withdrawal Agreement should be reached in the next few weeks
  • agreement has to be reached this Autumn in order for it to be ratified by both the UK and EU by 29 March
  • the Irish backstop is the key area of non-agreement
  • the PM wants frictionless access between the EU and UK markets
  • the PM’s solution is a temporary EU/UK common customs territory in case of any gaps after expiry of the implementation period and the entry into force of the comprehensive final UK/EU trading terms


The i newspaper on Monday carried news of the increase in paper cup recycling and the PCRRG report  – read here

Pack2Go calls for more detailed analysis of EU Single Use Proposals. Pack2Go says that the European Commission and European Parliament have sacrificed sound analysis and balanced policy in order to adopt “single-use” legislation before the EU elections. Reported in Packaging News here 

FDA Too Quick to Call BPA Chemical Safe. The debate over BPA has created some debate this week – has the The US Food and Drug Administration “jumped the gun” when it declared the chemical BPA safe for consumers?   Experts from the Endocrine Society have claim they have – read here 


13-15 November European Pizza & Pasta Show, Olympia.  Martin speaking on 13th November. Register here 

15 November 2018 – Bio-Based and Biodegradables Industries Association Conference on Resource & Waste Management: A blueprint for a circular economy. Martin is also speaking at this event.  Conference programmme and registration here

20 November 2018 – Food Matters Live – Martin Kersh is hosting a seminar session on ‘Evolving the on the go culture through innovative and sustainable packaging and recycling solutions’. More details and registration here 

6 December – Simply Cups Annual Conference 2018 at The Crystal, Royal Victoria Docks, London. Speakers include Lucy Siegle from BBC The One Show, Mary Creagh MP and Chairman House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee, Amelia Womak, Deputy Leader The Green Party and many more. Further information and sign up here 

23 January 2019 FPA Environment Seminar, Stationers’ Hall, London – booking details available shortly.

7 March 2019 FPA Awards and Exhibition, Grand Hotel Brighton.