Incoming: Textile EPR reporting
by Jennifer Brook at 17:30 in Circular Economy, Content, Environmental
No longer a distant missile, textile reporting has already landed in several European countries, and is continuing to spread across the EU.
A previous Lorax blog on textiles from 2021 stated that the EU Waste Framework Directive currently only requires member states to set up separate collection for textiles by 1 January 2025. More is needed to put this into practice in reality – an infrastructure, a method of financing the collection… and this deadline is now fast approaching.
With this in mind, the EU began proposals in 2023 to expand the regulations. The proposal would introduce mandatory textile EPR reporting across Europe – not for textile packaging, as already exists in many European schemes, but for textile products themselves, such as clothes, linen and footwear. It would set specific EU-wide targets for textile collection, recycling and reuse by 2030. The proposal would also recognise the existing social enterprises that collect waste textiles, focusing on the whole life cycle of a textile product, with the aim of encouraging producers to create circular products, and thus eliminating 'fast fashion'. This will be achieved through eco-modulation: for example, durable clothes that can withstand more washes will be charged a discounted EPR fee compared to flimsier alternatives. The proposal is half-way through the legislative process, and is due for a vote in plenary in March 2024.
Some European countries have already passed textile EPR legislation, and have begun to set up textile EPR schemes, which are outlined below.
The scheme 'Refashion' (previously 'Eco-TLC') has existed in France since 2007, and in 2020 they carried out a study to support the textile sector, regarding optical sorting technologies for textiles. Obligated products under Refashion include net curtains, clothes, costumes and shoes, and they have 3 specific eco-modulation criteria.
The UPV Textile Law came into effect on 1 July 2023. Since then, big sector players Modint and InRetail joined forces to create the scheme Stichting UPV Textiel. Producers could register and report last year, but didn't have to pay EPR fees. This year, producers will pay a standard, small start-up fee, to finance the implementation of the infrastructure. By 2025, producers will just pay for the textile products that they place onto the Dutch market. Obligated products include clothes, household towels and returned products, but do not include shoes, curtains or unsold stocks.
Latvia passed an amendment on 16 March 2023 to require producers to cover the costs of collection, processing and recycling of their textile waste. This cost would be part of the EPR fee paid to the government, known as the Natural Resource Tax – but EPR schemes could be set up as well, who producers would pay instead. The existing packaging scheme, LZP, is also planning on expanding to cover textile products. Textile reporting requirements in Latvia will come into effect on 1 July 2024.
Textile reporting is becoming ever more popular, and will eventually be required in every EU country, after the passage of the proposed changes to the EU Waste Framework Directive, potentially as soon as the end of this year. Individual countries could choose to implement textile reporting sooner, as we have seen. If you would like to know more about textile reporting, contact one of our team today.