Scottish Government plans to change PRN system


July 2012

The government is looking to allow packaging waste in Scotland to be recorded separately to that in England and Wales by amending the current producer responsibility regulations.

Presently, the legislation calls for businesses producing or selling products to report on the quantities of packaging sold on the entire UK market. Reprocessors and exporters are required to report on the amount of material they handle on a UK basis. The Scottish Government hopes that Scotland-specific reporting, will improve packaging recycling rates in the country.

Under the suggested system, retailers and importers would be required to submit separate figures for volumes of packaging sold in Scotland and those in the supply chain would need to provide evidence-based estimates.

Reprocessors and exporters who want to issue Scottish packaging recycling evidence (PRNs or PERNs) would need to prove that the packaging waste was originally collected in Scotland. As the Duty of Care requires waste transfer notes to record the origin of the waste, the government believes that few extra resources would be needed to do this.

The Government hopes that as an outcome of having a separate Scottish system for PRNs, the price paid for the material could rise as the demand for Scottish evidence and Scottish recyclate develops.