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Deadline Looming: UK’s Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) Scheme

UK businesses are urged to take immediate action to ensure they meet their obligations under the EPR scheme.

Tamara Ciochina

The clock is ticking for businesses operating in the UK as the deadline for compliance with the Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) scheme draws near. With enforcement action set to commence as of June 1st 2024, the stakes are higher than ever for packaging producers to act swiftly and responsibly.

EPR places the onus squarely on packaging producers to cover 100% of the net cost associated with processing their packaging waste. While the payment of EPR fees has been deferred until October 2025, the reporting obligations have already kicked in. Large organizations had two crucial deadlines for data submission – 1st October 2023 for the period of January to June 2023, and another on 1st April 2024 for the period of July to December 2023.

However, the grace period is coming to an end. Last September, the government announced that no enforcement action would be taken for late data submission until 31st May 2024. This means that businesses have a final chance to ensure compliance with the regulations and avoid potential repercussions.

Failure to act before the looming deadline could have severe consequences. From next month onwards, enforcement action will be initiated against non-compliant businesses. This could result in fines, penalties, and damage to the reputation of the companies involved. Moreover, non-compliance with EPR not only undermines environmental sustainability efforts but also contributes to the proliferation of packaging waste, exacerbating the global waste crisis.

In light of these impending developments, businesses must prioritize compliance with the EPR scheme. It is imperative for them to meticulously assess their packaging responsibilities and promptly submit the required data in accordance with the regulations and guidance provided.

As the 31st of May approaches, businesses are urged to take immediate action to ensure they meet their obligations under the EPR scheme. By doing so, they not only avoid potential enforcement measures but also demonstrate their commitment to environmental stewardship and corporate responsibility.

The time to act is now. Let us seize this opportunity to build a more sustainable future for generations to come.