Waste from Packaging

Recycling and Recovery Rates
Courtesy EPA ©

Ireland’s success in recovering packaging waste has increased significantly in the past twenty years. The trend to 2011 is shown in the graph above.

In accordance with the European Commission directive on packaging waste, all producers, including retailers, who place packaging on the Irish market, must divide up their packaging waste into separate waste types (i.e. waste aluminium, fibreboard, glass, paper, plastic sheeting, steel and wood) and organise the collection of these different types of waste by authorised recycling operators. 

Repak Limited is the only approved compliance scheme in Ireland for the recovery of packaging waste. Their role involves the promotion, co-ordination and financing of both the collection and recovery of packaging waste throughout the country. Repak are also committed to achieving Ireland’s targets for packaging waste recovery and recycling

The Waste Management (Packaging) (Amendment) Regulations 2006 outlined EU packaging waste recovery targets for Ireland of 60% (with 55% for recycling) and included material-specific recycling targets for 2011, which Ireland met. 2014 Amendments to the Packaging Regulations replace the Waste Management (Packaging) Regulations act as amended and aim to improve the recovery and recycling of packaging waste. They are intended to help achieve targets for the recovery of packaging waste established by Directive 94/62/EC, as amended by European Parliment and Council Directive 2004/12/EC, so that by 31st December 2008 a minimum of 60% of packaging waste by weight is recovered and a minimum of 55% of packaging waste by weight is recycled in total with specific recycling targets of 60% glass, 60% paper and board, 50% metals, 22.5% plastics, and 15% wood.

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