Successful FEFPEB spring meeting held in Edinburgh, Group welcomes change to European Union’s Packaging & Packaging Waste Directive

FEFPEB welcomed its members from 15 European countries to its spring meeting, which was held in Edinburgh in early May.

The annual gathering included presentations from MSP (Member of the Scottish Parliament) Fergus Ewing, who is the Scottish Rural Economy Secretary, on the importance of the wooden pallet and packaging sector to Scotland and the outlook with regards Brexit; Chief Executive of CONFOR, Stuart Goodall, who spoke about the Edinburgh-based organisation’s work with government to increase stocks of timber; and Guy Watt of John Clegg Consulting, who presented the latest report on the UK industry, which he carried out on behalf of the Timber Packaging & Pallet Confederation (TIMCON).

FEFPEB representatives were updated on the potential implications on the industry of Brexit and stressed the importance of its members in the UK and Europe working together to ensure that trade will remain smooth whatever final deal occurs. It presented the recent work of the European Confederation of Forest Industries (CEI-Bois) in areas including wood availability and sustainability, free trade policies and wood dust.

FEFPEB’s committees for industrial packaging, ISPM15, pallet pools and PR also held meetings during the two-day event.

The spring meeting was organised with the help of the Timber Packaging & Pallet Confederation (TIMCON), which represents the sector in the UK and Ireland. John Dye, TIMCON president, said: “We are very proud to welcome the European pallet and packaging industry to Edinburgh, which as well as being one of the most beautiful cities in the UK, is also a major hub for forest-based industries such as pallets and packaging.”

“The spring meeting saw an important exchange of information between members and discussion on subjects including European legislation, recycling and ISPM15,” said Ceelaert. “International logistics is connected by its very nature, so collaboration between the UK and our colleagues in Europe and beyond is essential, both now and after Brexit, to ensure that business remains smooth and wooden pallets and packaging continue to play their central role, both as a facilitator of trade and a part of the increasingly prominent circular economy.”

FEFPEB welcomes changes to Packaging Waste Directive

In another announcement, FEFPEB welcomed an important change to the European Union’s Packaging & Packaging Waste Directive, which affects how recycling targets for wooden packaging are calculated, following work by the industry.

The European Union has accepted that wood used in both the reuse and repair of pallets and packaging have to be included in the calculation of recycling rates.

FEFPEB has informed its members about the changes – which have been incorporated into the Packaging & Packaging Waste Directive.

“Wood used in both the reuse and repair of pallets and packaging has been accepted, which is a real success,” said Secretary general Fons Ceelaert. “Not reaching recycling targets could cause great problems in terms of penalties, so we are happy with this helpful new regulation,  with realistic recycling targets, which removes a lot of concern for our industry.”

He added that under the revised directive, replacing one component in a pallet also now allows the full weight of the pallet to be accounted for as recycled.

Source: FEFPEB Newsletter