The Netherlands – Working towards a fully circular textiles economy

Blayne Shiels, Valpak's International Account Manager summarises the key objectives of the Netherlands' Extended Producer Responsibility for Textiles Decree and provides an overview of what this means for textiles importers and producers.

The Waste Frame Directive

Textile consumption places the third highest pressure on water and land and has the fourth biggest impact on the environment and climate change throughout the EU. As the textile industry continues to grow and expand, it is becoming imperative to reduce the environmental impact of textiles.

The European Parliament and Council identified textiles as a critical issue in the Circular Economy Action Plan. To tackle this, the EU’s Waste Frame Directive requires EU Member States to set up a separate collection of textiles by 1 January 2025. Additionally, the EU stated in the Circular Economy Action Plan that Member States are obligated to promote the ‘repair and re-use’ of textiles.

The Netherlands’ implementation of EPR

The Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management in the Netherlands set the Extended Producer Responsibility for Textiles Decree to be implemented on 1 July 2023. Importers and producers are obligated to finance and organise a separate collection system for textiles. Companies are also obligated to work towards the government’s targets of 50% of textiles being recycled by 2025, and 75% of textiles being recycled by 2030. The Extended Producer Responsibility includes consumer clothing, corporate clothing, and household textiles.

The Netherlands is striving for a fully circular waste-free economy by 2050, in relation to all raw materials. This entails the recycling of all materials and resources. The Dutch government has set specific targets to drive the momentum of this project. For textiles, the aim is for 30% of textiles to contain recycled fibres by 2030.

Producers’ and importers’ obligations

Producers bear responsibility for the organisation and costs of the collection, sorting, and recycling of textiles.

Consumers must have free accessible collection points nearby to discard their waste.

The producer has a responsibility to demonstrate the cyclical life of the discarded waste and convey they have met reuse targets. It is imperative to work towards a consistently improving trajectory of the quality of organic waste and textiles, as a producer’s methodology will be scrutinised.

What does this mean for you?

From 1 July 2023, producers have six weeks to register with the Dutch Government and comply with the first obligations of the Decree.

If a producer is not planning on setting up its own collection points and recycling system, the producer is required to register with the appropriate compliance scheme and pay an annual fee.

Data submissions will commence in 2024 and 2025, with producers and importers declaring the quantity of textiles sold on the market the previous year and submitting a financial overview. From 2026 onwards, an annual report will be required alongside an additional detailing of the number of textiles that have been reused and recycled.

Penalties for non-compliance

The Dutch Extended Producer Responsibility Decree will be enforced through both administrative and criminal law sanctions. This will incorporate monetary fines, administrative penalties, and criminal sanctions depending on the severity of the offence.

Valpak can help

If your business is affected by the extended producer responsibility Decree, we will remove the administrative and resource-intensive burden of international environmental compliance. We can provide a range of services that can be tailored to suit your business’s needs.

To find out more about how the Decree could affect your business and how Valpak can help ensure compliance please call us on 03450 682 572 or complete our online enquiry form.