“Sustainable Packaging: From Design to Recycling”

“Sustainable packaging: from design to recycling” – a seminar organized by Latvijas Zalais punkts (The Green Dot of Latvia / LZP) in cooperation with the Packaging Association of Latvia (LIA) and the Latvia University of Life Sciences and Technologies (LBTU), took place in Jelgava on April 13 of this year and gathered both Latvian and international packaging industry specialists.

The seminar was opened by LZP Director Kaspars Zakulis and LBTU Vice-Rector for Science Irina Arhipova, followed by presentations by several industry experts. Director of the Environmental Protection Department of the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development (VARAM) Dr. Rudīte Vesere presented the planned changes in the regulatory framework of the European Union (EU) and Latvia regarding packaging and packaging waste. Iveta Krauja, the Chairperson of the LIA Board, introduced the global recommendations for circular packaging design and its necessity for Latvian packaging specialists and invited the participants to take into account in their daily work the recommendations of the World Packaging Organization (WPO) “Packaging Design for Recycling”, which are now translated also in Latvian with the financial support of the LZP. The new Recommendations serve as a guide in the responsible selection of materials for new packaging or replacement of existing packaging. Recommendations in Latvian can be downloaded here and Recommendations in English are available here.

The Vice President of Sustainability & Save Food of the World Packaging Organization, Nerida Kelton, gave a video presentation on how packaging affects and can help the sustainability of society. General Secretary of WPO Dr. Johannes Bergmair in his presentation, elaborated on the future of packaging in the context of a circular economy and a sustainable society.

LZP Environmental Management and Quality Manager Laura Berga analyzed whether a plastic-free society is possible. Dr. Sandra Muižniece-Brasava, head of the Technology and Knowledge Transfer Department at LBTU, presented a study on plastic packaging on the Latvian market. Followed by a presentation by Ieva Baldiņa, director of the Consumer Rights Monitoring Department of the Consumer Rights Protection Center, on the problem of green washing and recommendations on how to avoid it. At the end of the seminar, Dace Grava-Birzāka, director of the Quality and Process Management Department of “Maxima Latvija”, shared her practical experience of the opportunities and challenges in the transition to more sustainable packaging.

Photo: Ieva Makare and LIA

Those interested will have the opportunity to watch the video recording of the presentations of the lecturers, which will be published on Latvijas Zalais punkts “Youtube” channel.

The seminar is organized within the LIFE integrated project “Waste to Resources Latvia – boosting regional sustainability and circularity by introducing the concept of using waste as resources” (LIFE Waste To Resources IP, LIFE20 IPE/LV/000014), which is implemented with the financial support of LIFE program of the European Union and the State Regional Development Agency.