Verpackungsgesetz (VerpackG)

Introduction

In the past, many companies have not fulfilled their responsibilities regarding the Packaging Ordinance. Those who did everything right have helped pay for those who didn't. This could not be allowed to continue. Consequently, the legislator has created the Foundation Central Agency Packaging Register to increase transparency and control in the fulfilment of product responsibility. 

There will be a public section, LUCID, which makes it possible, for example, to see which entity has registered for which brands. Registration simultaneously confirms that product responsibilities have been fulfilled.

Summary

Companies dealing with consumer goods on the German market should verify their obligations under the VerpackG in order to prevent a distribution ban. Failing to register means that the packaging materials, the products, with these brands may not be marketed in Germany at any trade level. They are subject to a “distribution ban”.

VerpackG explained

Sales packaging materials, including service packaging and shipment packaging and also repackaging materials, which typically reach private households must be registered by the manufacturer in what is known as a dual system. The manufacturer registers his brand(s) and the related packaging volumes at a central register and pays the related levies, he also signs up to a recycle partner of his choice or create his own recycle scheme.

It is important to understand the term “manufacturer” in the context of this regulation;

  • The manufacturer of a product is the first distributor in Germany.
  • A first distributor is the first person commercially (also free of charge if applicable) providing B2C packaging filled with goods in Germany to a third party with the aim of distribution, consumption or use.
  • If the headquarters are abroad, however, then the domestic importer may also be deemed the first distributor in Germany and hence considered to be the manufacturer.
  • No matter what, the importer of B2C packaging materials must be sure that the brands of these packaged goods are registered at the central register (LUCID). The manufacturer can make the annual volume declarations all by himself unless the total volume in on or more of the categories is over a threshold in which case the information must be certified by a registered examiner.

The annual thresholds are:

  • Glass: 80,000 kg
  • Paper, Paperboard, Cardboard: 50,000 kg
  • Ferrous metals, Aluminium, plastics, drink cartons, other composites: 30,000 kg

If you haven’t registered yet, do it now:https://www.verpackungsregister.org

Resources:

Guide to the packaging act for manufacturers

Downloadable presentation about VerpackG (ProductIP login required)