The packaging regulations

The Producer Responsibility Obligations (Packaging Waste) Regulations were introduced in 1997 to reduce the environmental impact of packaging. The packaging regulations place obligations on businesses that use packaging, or sell packaged goods to finance the recovery and recycling of a proportionate amount of the packaging materials they have placed on the market. The obligations placed on these businesses are aimed at:

  • Reducing the amount of packaging produced.
  • Reducing the amount of packaging waste that goes to landfill.
  • Increasing the amount of packaging waste that is recycled and recovered.

A business that produced or handled more than 50 tonnes of packaging in the last year AND has a turnover of more than £2 million must comply with the packaging regulations

The definition of packaging

'Packaging' is any material used to hold, protect, handle, deliver and present goods. This includes packaging for raw materials right through to finished goods to be sold or being sold. For example, pallets, boxes, bags, tape for wrapping, rolls, tubes and clothes hangers sold as part of the clothing item.

What do you need to do?

If your business is obligated under the packaging regulations, you will be required to:

  1. Register with the Environment Agency (or relevant authority), either directly or by joining a compliance scheme such as Clarity Packaging Compliance.
  2. Submit annual data to the Environment Agency on the amount of packaging the business has handled.
  3. Procure recycling evidence notes known as PRNs (packaging waste recovery notes).
  4. Provide information to consumers about the product's packaging, including where it can be recycled and the meaning of labels.

These obligations relate to the total amount of packaging that your business handles, not the amount of packaging waste you produce.

Get help with the packaging regulations

If you want peace of mind that your packaging compliance is in safe hands, our Environment Agency approved scheme will take on your producer responsibility obligations on your behalf, saving you time and money. Join our scheme and we will register you with the correct environmental regulator, obtain evidence of your compliance and submit your certificate of compliance each year.

Find out what you could save by complying with Clarity. Get a quote from us today.

Let us help you

Latest news

Clarity Cares: Lunch and Learn

We've been getting our team involved with the charities and organisations we support through Clarity Cares and undertake some charity-based learning and objectives in July.…

Government releases summary of responses to Resources and Waste consultations

The UK government has published its response to the three waste and resources consultations, launched earlier in the year by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).…

Get in touch

Give us a call on 0845 129 7177

Drop us an email at

Or, you can
Request a call-back