Associate Environment Minister Scott Simpson visited Agpac Ltd’s Plasback, congratulated them on the scheme’s successful recycling of agricultural plastic, and announced Plasback’s reaccreditation as a Product Stewardship Scheme.
“Plasback collects plastic, such as silage wrap, irrigation pipes and fertiliser bags, from the agriculture and horticulture sectors and processes it into new products, such as Tuffboard, an innovative plywood replacement used on farms,” Mr Simpson says.
“Plasback provides farmers with an easy and practical way to recycle their plastic waste. Since 2010, when Plasback first became an accredited Product Stewardship Scheme, over 2500 farmers across New Zealand have signed up to have their plastics collected, and Plasback has recycled more than 6500 tonnes of plastic - equivalent to 650,000 sacks of potatoes.”
Product stewardship is the responsible management of the environmental impact of a product. It aims to reduce the impact of manufactured products at all stages of the product life cycle.
“Plasback provides twin benefits to the environment, as it reduces the harm associated with burning and burying plastic, and it reduces the need to extract more raw materials for new products. Business initiatives such as Plasback promote the sustainable use of resources and encourage producers and suppliers of products to take a whole life-cycle view of their products.”
“Under the Waste Minimisation Act, I can accredit product stewardship schemes that meet the criteria for reducing waste and environmental harm. A product stewardship scheme will only be accredited after it has been thoroughly assessed to ensure accreditation criteria have been met. In turn, accredited schemes have to report to me on their objectives and targets.”