Plastic packaging is subject to increasing regulations aimed at promoting the circular economy of plastics, including many different European, national and regional regulations to promote reusable packaging. The challenge is even greater in the case of food packaging, due to the difficulty of guaranteeing the safety of reusable packaging after repeated use and washings.
The Plastics Technology Centre AIMPLAS has created the Designed-to-be-Reusable trademark based on Regulation (EC) 1935/2004, Commission Regulation (EU) No 10/2011, Regulation (EC) No 282/2008, as well as dishwasher resistance standard UNE 53928:2020 (a Spanish technical standard).
This trademark certifies that a product is designed to be safely reused after being washed several times and that it has passed the tests required for a product to be considered reusable in terms of food safety. The trademark also validates the product’s functionality.
Tests that a product has to undergo before being awarded the trademark include:
- dishwasher resistance testing for at least five dishwasher cycles
- a non-intentionally added substances (NIAS) risk assessment
- migration tests to guarantee migration to food does not present a risk to human health
- sensory tests to ensure that reuse of packaging does not modify food’s organoleptic characteristics.
Advantages of a trademark
Packaging manufacturing companies that have been awarded the trademark have a competitive edge in terms of transparency and food safety.
For consumers who use the packaging, the trademark is a certificate of product safety and sustainability. Promoting reuse provides many advantages for the environment, including a clear reduction in the amount of waste, the use of fewer resources and a drop in greenhouse gas emissions.