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Freeloaders hurt Germany’s Green Dot recycling scheme

October 15, 2007

Freeloaders hurt Germany’s Green Dot recycling scheme
Germany’s pioneering Green Dot packaging recycling scheme is on the brink of collapse, says recycling firm Interseroh. Unscrupulous firms are apparently counterfeiting labels carrying the ubiquitious Green Dot — or Der Grüne Punkt — symbol. Only companies that pay a licence fee are legally allowed to display the symbol. This means unpunished freeloaders who sidestep the legal requirement to take back and recycle packaging gain an unfair commercial advantage.
In an article in Handelsblatt, a business magazine, Interseroh said that garbage cans will remain standing in the street as early as next year, unless the government changes the German Packaging Ordinance (GPO). This became law in 1991 to give responsibility for packaging to the whole supply chain, from material manufacturer through to the retailer.
Duales System Deutschland, the former recycling monopoly that owns the Green Dot licence, warned last May of the need to take action against illegal usage of the symbol. It feels the ratio between the collection of packaging and revenue had become seriously unbalanced.

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