As part of the Plastics New Zealand ‘Advancing the Circular Economy for Plastics' Programme; Working groups updates - Pilot Programme for Lids & Caps Launching, Report into the Phase out of B2C Consumer EPS Protective Packaging and could you qualify for Co-funding?via the Design Advisory - Circular Connect!

 

Working Groups Update: July 2022

Good Caps: A pilot to help solve the conundrum of lids and caps

    Good Caps 1

What’s the problem?Lids Map

Plastic lids and caps have been an issue in Aotearoa New Zealand’s resource recovery system for some time with the majority of lids and caps going to landfill as they are unable to be effectively recovered at material recovery facilities due to their size. Lids and caps also often end up as litter. Sustainable Coastlines’ Litter Intelligence data shows 12,500 plastic lids and caps per annum are found on our beaches around the country.

Today, the vast majority of councils around the country ask residents to remove lids from bottles in an effort to ensure that the main bottle is free of food contaminants.

What’s happening?

Plastics NZ has collaborated with the Packaging Forum and a number of manufacturers and brands to create a 10-week pilot called Good Caps to test how to effectively collect, sort, transport and reprocess lids and caps (both plastic and metal). There are 12 schools in the Hawkes Bay who will participate in a competition to collect the most lids and caps.

The aim of the pilot is to share with young people and their whanau:

(1) the importance of saving materials from landfill;

(2) the value of the materials (particularly when separated into different material categories); and

(3) what can be made from these materials.

Any proceeds from the sale of materials to reprocessors will go to the Lions Clubs charity partner, Kidney Kids.

Find out more

If you’d like to find out more, please contact Sandy Botterill, Circular Economy Manager on 027 535 3298 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

This working group is part of Plastics NZ’s ‘Advancing the Circular Economy for Plastics” programme which is aimed at helping Aotearoa NZ create a Low Emissions Circular Economy. This programme is co-funded by the Ministry for the Environment’s Waste Minimisation Fund.

 

Report into the Phase out of B2C Consumer EPS Protective Packaging

 EPS 1The NZ Ministry for the Environment (“MFE”) undertook public consultation in 2020 in relation to reducing the impact of plastic on our environment with the outcome being the mandatory phaseout of a number of problematic plastics and applications. It was also identified that more work was needed in relation to the Expanded Polystyrene (“EPS”) used for cold chain and protective packaging. MFE indicated, at the time of making the phaseout announcements, that they planned to work with sector experts to identify possible solutions and areas where alternatives could be used.

EPS packaging is often perceived as harmful to the environment as it is very lightweight, and easily windblown, thereby having an increased risk of entering the environment as well as being difficult to manage in landfill due to its high volume and low weight. It is, however, the light weight of EPS, combined with its excellent thermal and impact properties, that also make it very difficult to find viable alternatives in many packaging applications.

 Report submitted to MFE

Plastics NZ led the EPS Protective Packaging Working Group and has now submitted a report to MFE which provides a detailed overview of the use of protective packaging across different product categories and recommendations around specific product categories where B2C EPS protective packaging is able to be phased out. These recommendations were supported by a research study undertaken by Wilkinson Environmental.

Product stewardship for EPS

Plastics NZ will initiate a new working group starting in August 2022 to co-design and recommend a framework for a national product stewardship programme for EPS.

Find out more

If you’d like to find out more, please contact Sandy Botterill, Circular Economy Manager on 027 535 3298 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

This working group is part of Plastics NZ’s ‘Advancing the Circular Economy for Plastics” programme which is aimed at helping Aotearoa NZ create a Low Emissions Circular Economy. This programme is co-funded by the Ministry for the Environment’s Waste Minimisation Fund. 

Design Advisory Service: CircularConnect July 2022

CC

Is your business interested in being more sustainable, but you don’t know where to start? Maybe you have a couple of ideas in mind, but you’re not sure what projects will have the greatest impact?

Perhaps you’re looking to …

  • Minimize the amount of plastic
  • Ensure the plastic you use is effectively recovered and recycled
  • Create a reusable plastic product or packaging
  • Design your products so that they’re easy to repair

These issues are difficult to navigate, but there are experts who can help. Get in touch to see if your business could qualify for CO-FUNDING (of up to $20,000).

HOw it works

How it works

(1) Get in touch with Plastics NZ if you want to get more circular in the plastics you use.

(2) Complete a short Application Form.

(3) We’ll connect you with a couple of experts who can help.

(4) We sign a Funding Agreement which details the specifics of the project.

(5) Get started on your project!

Find out more

If you or one of your customers is interested in learning more about CircularConnect, go to www.plastics.org.nz/environment/circularconnect or contact Sandy Botterill, Circular Economy Manager on 027 535 3298 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

CircularConnect forms part of the programme of work co-funded by the Ministry for the Environment’s Waste Minimisation Fund to advance the new plastics economy in Aotearoa New Zealand.