No colour, no PVC: South Korea bans hard-to-recycle plastic materials for F&B packaging
By Pearly Neo
- Last updated on
South Korea has enforced regulations banning the usage of plastic materials that are difficult to recycle such as PVC and coloured PET bottles for the packaging of food and beverage items.
This is part of the country’s objective to reduce its plastic waste production by half, as well as more than double recycling rates from 34% to 70% by 2030.
"The comprehensive countermeasures focus on enhancing public management and stabilizing the recycling market,” South Korean Ministry of Environment (MoE) Minister Kim Eun-kyung said at an announcement back in 2018, not long after China announced an import ban on 24 types of recyclables.
“The government will be involved in the life cycle of the products, starting from production to the recycling process.”
The ban was implemented by the MoE under the Act on the Promotion of Saving and Recycling of Resources, focusing on PVC (Polyvinyl chloride) and coloured PET (Polyethylene terephthalate) plastic bottles, as these are known to be more difficult to recycle as compared to transparent PET plastic bottles.