Green Alley Award 2022: The Latest Circular Economy Business Ideas

 

With the Green Alley Award, the Landbell Group has launched the first European start-up prize for the circular economy. As of now, young companies can submit their application for the Green Alley Award 2022 online at www.green-alley-award.com and get the chance to win €25,000. A jury of experienced professionals from Landbell Group and external experts will determine the winner following a live pitch, which will take place in April 2022.

 

“We want to encourage new ideas and business models to save resources and reduce waste,’ says Jan Patrick Schulz, CEO of Landbell Group. ‘There are so many creative ideas around. Our aim is to foster and promote young founders and connect them to our vast network of circular economy experts across Europe.”

The startup award is also of interest to companies looking to the future: The Green Alley Award unearths promising sustainable business solutions before they enter the mass market and offers established companies new sustainable alternatives to improve their products, services and supply chains. From sustainable materials to helpful digital solutions, the startups offer a wide range of concepts for different industries. Last year, traceless materials from Hamburg, Germany, won the award with a patent-pending technology that converts residual materials from the agricultural industry into a sustainable plastic alternative. In 2017, Finnish start-up Sulapac had presented a wood-based, biodegradable alternative to cosmetics packaging. The first winner of the Green Alley Award, Finnish start-up Repack, developed a service offering reusable shipping packaging for online retailers.

 

On our new website potential sponsors and partners can find out the many advantages of working with circular economy startups: https://landbell-group.com/green-alley-award/


Your opinion matters: ZSVR to revise criteria on system participation

 

Germany’s Central Agency Packaging Register (Zentrale Stelle Verpackungsregister, ZSVR) has started a consultation on the 2021 edition of its system participation requirement catalogue. First published in 2018, the catalogue and its product groups have since been regularly updated and specified.

The catalogue allows producers to quickly and easily determine whether or not their packaging is subject to system participation. According to the German Packaging Law (Verpackungsgesetz, VerpackG), producers are responsible for ensuring that their packaging is classified correctly and, if necessary, is contracted with a packaging scheme.

The draft version of the catalogue consists of a total of 39 product sheets which can be viewed and downloaded from the ZSVR website’s consultation procedures section, including new and amended products.

Stakeholders can comment on the draft until Wednesday, 8 September 2021 via post or preferably electronically via konsultationsverfahren@verpackungsregister.org.

After the consultation period, the catalogue will be revised and voted on again. The final version is expected to be published on the ZSVR website in autumn replacing the current catalogue.


You can trust us… now it’s official!

Europe’s leading provider of e-commerce protection awards certificate to EASy-Shop

Following a successful audit, Landbell Group’s EASy-Shop now carries the buyer protection trustmark of Trusted Shops.

With the trustmark, Landbell Group can prove to its customers that quality criteria such as data protection, transparency and comprehensibility, as well as security during payment, are checked and guaranteed by an independent provider. The buyer protection connected to the trustmark also represents additional security for customers.

EASy-Shop offers sellers and online retailers low-cost, flat-rate solutions for licensing small and medium packaging volumes for Germany and Austria. This can be done quickly and easily at easyshop.landbell.de. EASy-Shop also provides detailed information and FAQs on the German Packaging Law.

Landbell Group will also collect reviews via the Trusted Shops rating system, ensuring even more transparency for customers and visitors. In addition to the EASy-Shop for Germany, the Trusted Shops trustmark will soon be awarded for Austria, too.

For more information on Trusted Shops, please visit their website.


New EPR requirements for online marketplaces

Online retail is getting more and more popular. It is not only convenient for consumers; it has also helped consumers and shops to cope with the closures caused by COVID.

At the same time, national authorities and the European Commission have identified sales via online channels as a major source of freeriding, whereby companies do not comply with EU-wide extended producer responsibilities (EPR) for WEEE, batteries and packaging.

One significant channel is sales via online marketplaces, where sellers do not always fulfil their EPR obligations for various reasons, including the seller not being aware of their obligations. Furthermore, online platforms still have no legal obligation to ensure the compliance of their sellers.

Following the mandate from Article 8a of the Waste Framework Directive, the European institutions have emphasized once again that actors in online sales have similar obligations to other producers or retailers. The European Commission is currently working on “Guidelines on the minimum requirements for extended producer responsibility schemes”.

According to a first draft from September 2020, Member States should consider introducing actions to prevent illegal online selling. The draft guidelines specifically mention the need to impose certain responsibilities on marketplaces to tackle the freeriding problem, such as the requirement for the online marketplace to request and check sellers’ compliance with their EPR obligations: for example, registration and reporting.

Although the Guidance is not yet officially published, Germany, France, Belgium and Portugal have already published or drafted legislation to implement marketplace requirements, albeit while applying a slightly different approach to regulation.

For example, marketplaces would be obliged to share EPR compliance information with their sellers in Germany and Belgium, but not in France and Portugal.  Other requirements include active checking that sellers are fulfilling their registration or reporting obligations, have a contract with a producer responsibility organisation, or that the marketplace is keeping an internal register of EPR data for all its sellers.

In the event of a seller’s non-compliance, Members States are considering different measures that the marketplace would need to take, such as stopping the sales of affected sellers or taking on the seller’s EPR obligation.

It is expected that other countries will follow the path of Germany, France, Belgium and Portugal, as all EU Member States are struggling with the negative effects of freeriding. These include underfunding of waste management operations and the undermining of legitimate producers who must pay more to compensate for the freeriders.

What is the current status of the new obligations for online marketplaces in Germany can be found at www.verpackungesetz-info.de

 


Landbell launches free PACK2RECYCLE online tool for customers

Landbell launches free PACK2RECYCLE online tool for customers

Recyclable packaging is key to a functioning circular economy. By keeping important raw materials in the loop, we can actively contribute to climate and resource protection.

As an environmental and waste disposal specialist, Landbell began offering its customers professional support for evaluating and optimising the recyclability of their packaging in 2020 with PACK2RECYCLE.

Now, since 1 June 2021, Landbell customers are able to register free of charge with the PACK2RECYCLE online tool to receive initial feedback on their packaging’s recyclability.

The online tool, which was developed by Landbell, provides a simple query mask in which customers can enter their packaging data, such as material type, colour and size. The tool then generates a report which shows the recyclability of the packaging.

An overview page gives customers constant access to all the packaging that they entered, including the result of the recyclability. However, the tool provides only an estimate of the recyclability and cannot not replace a professional assessment based on the minimum standard of the Central Packaging Register (ZSVR).

For a more detailed assessment according to the ZSVR minimum standard or for certification with the PACK2RECYCLE label, please contact us.


... that the Olympic medals for Tokyo 2020 are made from recycled electronic goods like your smartphone?

... that the Olympic medals for Tokyo 2020 are made from recycled electronic goods like your smartphone?

Normally, the Olympic Games are not known for sustainability and climate protection. In July 2021, however, the greenest and lowest-emission Olympic Games of all time are to take place in Tokyo.

The event organisers collected about 80,000 tonnes of metal from small household appliances, such as used mobile phones, to create the 5,000 gold, silver and bronze medals. To make the medal podiums for the Games, hard-to-recycle plastic is collected from thousands of stores across the country and the ocean.

Furthermore, the organisers are aiming to ensure that 99% of the items and goods procured for the Olympics, and 65% of the waste generated from its operations, will be reused or recycled by fine waste separation. Cardboard beds and the mattresses for athletes will be fully recyclable after use.

However, a prerequisite for functioning recycling is always the correct separation of waste. This is the only way to create new products without using new resources. You can find more information on the correct waste separation here.

 


How we are responding to the global expansion of EPR

Landbell Group publishes its annual performance report for 2020

“Despite the unprecedented difficulties, the world in which our customers operate did not stand still last year. More governments implemented extended producer responsibility (EPR) to tackle their waste and resource problems. Consequently, more companies had to stay on the right side of the laws that they introduced.”

These are the opening words from CEO Jan Patrick Schulz in Landbell Group’s annual performance report, which was published at the end of May. The major theme of the report, which covers the group’s activities last year, is the global expansion of EPR.

The report describes how Landbell Group is helping producers to tackle this increasingly international challenge.

In Europe and the Middle East, Landbell Group’s producer responsibility organisations treated over 760,000 tonnes of waste batteries, electronics and packaging last year – and the group increased its customer base to more than 32,000 companies in 55 countries.

The group’s environmental and chemical consulting teams added more countries to their international compliance programmes, and the global takeback team also expanded its network.

Online, Landbell Group relaunched its EASy-Shop for packaging compliance, enhanced its regulatory tracking service to cover more than 130 countries, and introduced One2One, a digital platform for online retailers to meet their takeback obligations for WEEE.

These are just some of the ways that Landbell Group is striving to support its customers in all their markets. For more information, read the full report here.


New online label for packaging licensing

The German Packaging Law (VerpackG) requires producers and distributors of sales packaging to fulfil their producer responsibility obligations and register their packaging with a packaging scheme to ensure proper collection and recycling – regardless of whether the sales packaging ends up as waste with the consumer or at comparable locations.

The Packaging Law applies to large mail-order companies, as well as small online retailers, even if their headquarters are based abroad. And since the law does not provide for a de-minimis limit, it even applies to the smallest quantities.

To allow Landbell customers to show their compliance with the above-mentioned obligations to their own customers and business partners, Landbell has developed an online label for packaging licensing.

With this online label, Landbell customers can prove that they are licensing their packaging with Landbell’s packaging scheme and are therefore fulfilling their obligations under the Packaging Law.

The online label is exclusively available to Landbell customers, and can be easily displayed on a webshop or in social media posts. It will be available in German, English and Italian.

Landbell’s certified and independent packaging scheme has been operating since August 2003, providing national and pan-European services. Founded in 1995 as a waste management company in Germany, Landbell Group has since developed into a global service provider.

Today, the company operates 32 takeback schemes worldwide for various waste streams and ensures over 32,000 customers in more than 50 countries fulfil their extended producer responsibility obligations. In 2020, Landbell Group collected over 760,000 tonnes of waste electrical and electronic equipment, batteries and packaging.

Please contact us for more information.


Eco-friendly packaging design with PACK2RECYCLE

Sustainability is a hot topic these days, especially when it comes to packaging, as studies suggest that sustainable product packaging is becoming more and more important to consumers.

The main criterium is recyclability, which aims to keep important raw materials in the loop, thereby actively contributing to climate protection.

As a leading supplier of environmental compliance solutions, Landbell Group started offering its customers professional support for evaluating and optimising the recyclability of packaging in 2020 with PACK2RECYCLE.

This modular solution can be individually tailored to customers’ needs and takes into account additional criteria to those developed by the Central Agency Packaging Register in Germany.

PACK2RECYCLE is a partnership between Landbell Group and the consultancy, Forschgruen.

Forschgruen has been offering comprehensive consulting and other services related to extended producer responsibility, and the corresponding legislation, for more than 20 years. Their services cover packaging and other waste streams, in Germany, Europe and worldwide.

After successful certification, producers whose packaging is particularly recyclable (it contains at least 80% recyclable material) can mark their packaging with the PACK2RECYCLE label. This label is traceable thanks to a unique ID and provides reliable proof that the manufacturer is using recyclable packaging.

In addition to the PACK2RECYCLE label, Landbell Group also offers its customers:

  • The Landbell Climate Protection Certificate, confirming that packaging licensed by the customer is largely recycled and kept in the raw material loop.
  • The Landbell Online Label, demonstrating that Landbell Germany customers are fulfilling their extended producer responsibility obligations and contributing to the recycling system.
  • The European Recycling Platform (ERP) membership badge, showing ERP customers are also complying with their extended producer responsibility obligations by joining a scheme.

Please click here for more information about PACK2RECYCLE.


...how to properly dispose of your empty medicine packaging?

...how to properly dispose of your empty medicine packaging?

The sun is finally making an appearance again and the cold season is over. But where to put the empty medicine packaging? Cough syrup, fever suppositories or cold ointments come in a wide variety of packaging, all of which need to be disposed of in an environmentally friendly manner. It is always important to remember that medicine packaging may only be disposed of when it is completely empty.

Blister or push-through packaging
Medicines in the form of tablets, capsules or similar are often shrink-wrapped in so-called blister packaging. These packages made of plastic and aluminium foil belong in the yellow bin or the yellow bag. This also applies to plastic medicine cans.

Ointment tubes
Ointments, gels and the like are often sold in aluminium tubes. These also belong in the yellow bin or the yellow bag. Do not forget: Unscrew the plastic lid and throw it separately in the packaging waste. If the tubes are made entirely of plastic, they also belong in the yellow bin or the yellow bag.

Ointment jars
Ointments are also available in jars - for example, when they are mixed in the pharmacy. These jars are usually made of plastic and can be thrown into the yellow bin or the yellow bag.

Pump sprays and spray cans
Pump sprays made of plastic also belong in the yellow bin or the yellow bag. The same applies to spray cans made of aluminium, such as those used for spray plasters. Caution: The spray cans must be completely empty. If there are still residues, they can catch fire or explode.

Pharmaceutical glass containers
Glass containers for medicines - from vials to jars - are disposed of in the glass container, according to the colour in the container for white, brown or green glass.

Outer packaging and package inserts
Cardboard packaging and paper package inserts should be disposed of in the paper container.

You can also find more information on the correct waste separation here.