German Plastics Recycler Applauds European Certification Standard

Executive with MTM Plastics says he feels the creation of the EuCertPlast standard will improve the recycling of the commodity.

August 16, 2012
Recycling Today Staff
Certification Legislation & Regulations

Michael Scriba, an executive with the German plastics recycling company MTM Plastics, has applauded the creation of the EuCertPlast standard recently implemented in Europe.

“With this, hopefully the regionalism in the certification practice will soon come to an end,” Scriba says. “Until now companies like MTM, who work with various domestic and foreign suppliers, had to allow themselves to be audited several times a year according to varying inspection requirements. The Europe-wide uniform certification system EuCertPlast should put an end to this costly and time-consuming practice.

EuCertPlast is a project aiming at creating a European certification for post-consumer plastics recyclers. The project is financed by the European Commission under its Eco-Innovation Programme.

“In the future MTM will only be certified according to this standard, which more than fulfills the German requirements," Scriba adds.

The creation of the EuCertPlast follows discussions with a host of European plastic processing and repelletizer associations, individual companies, as well as operators of collection systems. The parties reached agreement on the EuCertPlast standard in early July 2012. Groups that were a part of the discussion were the European Plastics Recyclers (EuPR), European Plastics Recycling Organisation (EPRO), European Plastics Converters (EuPC), European Association unoriented Polyester Films (EuPET) and Recovinyl.

The new EuCertPlast standard is accepted throughout Europe, and provides proof of qualification for recycling operations in a timely manner. Scriba expects the new standard to bring an end to the previous distortions of the competition.

“Although the inspection criteria are somewhat stricter than those of the German authorities, we see an advantage in this. If they are enforced, all competitors in Europe will compete at the same level," Scriba says.

The certifications and audit system EuCertPlast, which started in July 2012, applies the existing CEN Standard 15343 to plastic recycling. All accredited inspectors can implement the new inspection procedure.

With the uniform certification practice, EuCertPlast partners says they look to give suppliers and clients the certainty that the plastic scrap handled is being processed in accordance with the best industry practices, in an environmentally responsible manner and in compliance with the standards.

For products meeting the standard, a “Blue Angel” eco-label will be a requirement for products made of recycled plastics beginning 2013.