The UK’s Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) has launched a consultation on the draft regulations for its extended producer responsibility (EPR) scheme for packaging.

The consultation on the draft producer responsibility obligations regulations (2024) opened on 28 July and will be open until 9 October this year.

This review is being undertaken in close coordination with the various UK governments, including the Welsh government, the Scottish government, as well as Defra in Northern Ireland.

Under the newly opened consultation, the department has shared its draft regulations that are meant to implement the EPR scheme, as set out under the government’s response in March last year.

Once finalised, the draft regulations will be applicable across the UK, Defra said.

“We want your views on how the approach set out in the government response to the EPR consultation held in March 2022 has been reflected in these draft regulations and how easy they will be to implement,” Defra said in a media release.

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Another major purpose of launching this consultation is to collect people’s feedback on the operability of the implementation arrangements specified in the government’s consultation response.

The department has also asked people to provide their feedback on how clear these draft regulations are, especially in terms of the proposed specific responsibilities of producers, reprocessors, exporters, compliance schemes, local authorities/councils, as well as scheme administrators themselves.

The latest move comes just two days after Defra announced its plans to defer the EPR scheme for packaging by one year, from October 2024 to October 2025.

The move was made to minimise the current economic pressure being faced by various businesses and consumers across the UK.