On November 15th, 2021, Taiwan’s EPA published a draft regulation that would restrict the production, import, and sale of flat packaging materials containing polyvinyl chloride (PVC). The draft regulation is based on Article 21 of Taiwan’s Waste Disposal Act. This draft regulation, "Restriction on the Production, Importation, and Sales of Plate Packaging Material Containing Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC), Designated Recyclable Containers and Non-plate Disposable Tableware Containers" is under public consultation and the deadline for comment is January 17th.
Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) is one of the most widely used polymers in the world. Due to its versatile nature, PVC is extensively used in everyday life. In the draft, several concerns about PVC usage are listed, including:
Stabilizers are often added to PVC products to facilitate its heat resistance and this may be contaminated with heavy metal like lead or cadmium and may be hazard to human health.
PVC material is not resistant to oil/soluble corrosion and has the possibility of plasticizers penetrating into food and increasing carcinogenic risks and exposures to environmental hormones.
At the waste stage of PVC, dioxin may be generated after incineration and release of lead, cadmium and other heavy metals (due to addition of the stabilizer) into the air.
According to the draft, from 1st of November 2022, PVC will be prohibited in plate packaging materials for animal food, dairy products, drinking water, seasonings and alcohol. Plate packaging materials, in the draft regulation, are defined as the plastic lining, blister, and plate containers. Plastic lining is the topless packaging material that is used to cushion and protect the substances or products contained inside, while blister containers are processed PVC plates used in the same way.
PVCs and packaging materials containing PVC manufactured before 1st of November 2022 would not be affected by the ban.
PVC packaging has been banned or restricted in a number of countries around the world, such as Canada, Spain, South Korea and the Czech Republic. Taiwan’s proposal for banning the use of PVC in plate packaging materials is a step further to this effort. EPA also mentioned it will steer industry toward alternative material and increase consumers’ awareness of the subject.
Last Update: 2022-01-10