Monday, 17 May 2021

Polystyrene Association of South Africa Welcomes new members

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Polystyrene Association of South Africa Welcomes new members

The Polystyrene Association of South Africa (Poly SA) – the non-profit Producer Responsibility Organisation (PRO) for the local polystyrene industry, has announced that Goldpack, Pakeks and Plaslantic recently signed up as new members. Adri Spangenberg, CEO of Poly SA, said they welcomed the positive response from brand owners and retailers following their calls to sign up in order to demonstrate their commitment to Extended Producer Responsibility.

“The new Section 18 regulations contained within the National Environmental Management: Waste Act (No. 59 of 2008) are a welcome step towards a more collaborative approach between government and industry. It stipulates that any company or brand that converts/manufactures or imports any form of packaging will be required to pay an EPR fee per tonne, which will be different for the various material streams. In addition, strict collection and recycling targets have been established, which need to be met by industry over the next five years, starting from January 2022,” Adri explains.

“Although the new legislation will only become mandatory from 5 November 2021, it is important for industry role-players to become involved as soon as possible in order to provide their inputs and suggestions while we are busy finalising our plans. Once the law is promulgated, it will be too late for producers to want to make changes or object to the terms. For this reason, we applaud Goldpack, Pakeks and Plaslantic for heeding to our call to sign-up to the Polystyrene Association,” she says.

Goldpack is a packaging solutions provider specialising in packhouse equipment and end-of-line automation. With customers operating in various industries, Clyde Challenor of Goldpack says corporate social responsibility and a commitment to sustainability are paramount to their business ethos. “We have a long-standing association with Poly SA through our involvement in their Breadtags for Wheelchairs project.  Taking the step to become a fully-fledged member was the next step for us, as we believe in doing our best to ensure sustainability and a full circle responsible approach to packaging. Our signing up with Poly SA signals our intent and commitment to reduce wastage and ensure we produce products in a way that is responsible, sustainable and environmentally conscious,” Clyde says.

Turkey-based Pakeks Labelling Solutions prides itself on being innovators and leaders in their field. They incorporate the latest in technology and design to continuously offer their clients the best  quality and healthier products. However, this does not mean they are willing to sacrifice on sustainable solutions and processes, as they strive towards ensuring a healthy environment and industry, underpinned by a respectful approach to production. “Joining Poly SA was important for us in order to expand our footprint in South Africa.

We are also hoping that this membership will offer us a better understanding of the of South African context and customers, while investing in building the country’s collection and recycling infrastructure, says Seden Çıracıoğlu from poly_sa members two Plaslantic in Cape Town is specialist suppliers of polystyrene sheeting for the yoghurt industry, but also produce ABS, Polypropylene and Styrolux sheeting. Jannie van Tonder of Plaslantic says joining the PRO was the right thing to do for the greater good of the industry and the country.

“We did not sign up because we were hoping to unlock any benefits for us personally as a company. Instead we felt it is important to make a positive contribution to our Government and industry’s efforts to reduce the amount of waste being sent to landfill or ending up in the environment. We want to support any effort that will not only build our industry, but also a better, cleaner country for generations to come,” Jannie explains. “Government has set high targets that we have to meet over the next five years with regards to the collection and recycling of polystyrene.

Moreover, the new legislation also ensures that non-compliant ‘free riders’ can be reported to the Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries (DEFF) from 5 November 2021. We therefore welcome our new members who have signed up willingly and encourage all the other role-players across the entire value chain to follow their example as soon as possible.

Not only will this ensure that you are compliant with legislation and avoid hefty penalties or even jail time, but we need a collective effort as we share ideas and innovations to develop a sustainable, industry-led plan that is built around the unique needs and challenges of the polystyrene industry,” Adri concludes.