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Source: BUS Sachsen-Anhalt (Linie6PLus)

Apply for approval for recycling processes of plastics in contact with foodstuffs


Materials that come into contact with food are subject to European legislation. They must not, under good manufacturing practice and under normal conditions, transfer constituents to the food in quantities likely to

  • endanger human health
  • an unacceptable change in the composition of the food, or
  • impair the organoleptic properties of the food, such as taste or odor.

If you recycle plastics that have already been used in order to recycle the materials into food contact materials such as packaging, they could be contaminated with other substances. To prevent this, you must have your specific recycling process reviewed and approved in advance by the European Commission.

As a manufacturer of food contact materials, you are responsible for compliance with food law requirements. You must therefore ensure that such contact materials are harmless to health.

You can submit the application for approval of a recycling process for food contact plastics exclusively via the online portal E-Submission Food Chain Platform (ESFC).

The Federal Office of Consumer Protection and Food Safety (BVL) is the national point of contact in Germany. If you select the BVL as your point of contact, the BVL formally checks the application for completeness and relevance of the documents. The BVL then forwards it to the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).

EFSA prepares a scientific opinion on each application, which serves as the basis for the European Commission's authorization decision.

If your recycling process meets the legal and technical requirements, the process may be used. If there are conditions or restrictions attached to the authorization, companies must comply with them.

If you acquire new scientific or technical knowledge that may affect the evaluation of the safety of the substance in relation to human health, you must inform the Commission immediately.

  • The content and form of your application and the accompanying documents must comply with the requirements of EFSA's guidance.
  • You have to submit the application documents according to the requirements of the so-called Guideline document of EFSA.

There are no costs involved.

There is no deadline for submission.

  • You file an appeal against a decision directly with the authorizing body, i.e. the European Commission.

Forms available: No
Written form required: No
Informal application possible: No
Personal appearance required: No

Online services available: Yes

You can apply for approval for a recycling process for food contact plastics exclusively online via the European Commission's E-Submission Food Chain Platform (ESFC) portal. The process goes through different phases with different stakeholders and responsibilities:

  • Upload your application, prepared according to EFSA's specifications, directly to the platform.
  • Follow the procedure described in the so-called User Guide of the platform.
  • The BVL will receive the application if you have selected it as the national contact point.
  • After successful completion of the formal review, the BVL forwards the application within the platform to the responsibility of EFSA.
  • EFSA takes over the scientific review and publishes information on received applications in scientific opinions.
  • Via the Open EFSA Portal, you and other interested parties can follow the status of applications up to the publication of the scientific opinion.
  • The European Commission decides on the actual approval.

Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL)

The text was automatically translated based on the German content.

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