European Commission's proposal on single-use plastics gets mixed reactions from industry

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Single-use Q-tips with plastic sticks are on the list of products to be banned

The industry has responded to the EC’s proposal on single-use plastics with a mixture of frustration and disappointment.

EuPC, the European trade association representing European plastics converters.

 said the proposal represented a “symbolic attack” on a category of poorly defined products, leading to  “confusion of end users” and causing “fragmentation of the Single Market”. 

 “The timing is totally wrong” says Alexandre Dangis, EuPC Director. “At a moment where the EU Commission is asking the industry to pledge or commit to more use of recycled plastics materials, it is also asking to ban certain recyclable products.”

PlasticsEurope, the association of raw material producers, called on the Commission to avoid “shortcuts – plastic product bans are not the solution and will not achieve the structural change needed to build the foundation for a sustainable and resource efficient economy; as alternative products may not be more sustainable”.

Germany’s plastics packaging association, IK Industrievereinigung Kunststoffverpackungen, roundly rejects the proposed ban. “Bans on individual products completely overturn the holistic approach of the far-reaching EU Plastics Strategy, which our industry wholeheartedly supports”, the association said. 

In response to the Commission’s statement that the initiative is “targeted and proportionate”, the packaging association became even more blunt. Calling the proposal “unnecessary political gesturing”, its managing director, Jürgen Bruder commented that “In our opinion, prohibiting individual products is wholly disproportionate.” He urges a focus on recovery, re-use and, in general, more punitive sanctions on littering.

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