EPR enforcement in England and Scotland delayed

Defra has declared that up to 31 May 2024, producers in England and Scotland will face no legal action for failing to submit data under the extended producer responsibility (EPR) for packaging, following a decision to postpone the collection of EPR fees by a year to October 2025. Although there won’t be any enforcement, Defra has highlighted that per the EPR data regulations, there remains a legal obligation to gather and report on packaging data. This applies to both compliance schemes submitting data for their members and those providing data straight to the regulatory bodies. The government emphasised the importance of continued data collection, stating that it would aid in determining indicative costs for businesses under EPR. Defra plans to unveil preliminary estimates by the close of 2023 or early 2024.

Meanwhile, reporting deadlines for packaging data in England stand as 1 October 2023 and 1 April 2024, with the data to date back to 1 March 2023. In contrast, Northern Ireland hasn’t adopted the RPS and producers are advised to make reasonable efforts to report data. Over in Wales, the obligation for businesses to report packaging data isn’t in effect until April 2024. To assist in navigating the EPR for packaging, Defra recently unveiled a page summarising all related guidance on 31 August.