VCN – Canada’s new regulation on plastic packaging applied from the beginning of 2023 may affect Vietnam’s exports of processed foods and other products to this market.
|Vinamilk has cooperated with An Phat Holdings to switch to using AnEco biodegradable bags. Photo: S.T|
Ban on importing single-use plastic products
According to the roadmap, from December 2022, Canada will ban the production and import of single-use plastic products such as shopping bags, plastic cutlery, and disposable plastic dishes. From June 2023, Canada will ban the import of beverage products with plastic straws and handles and will ban the sale of these products entirely from 6/2024. The timeline for banning the production and import of other plastic products will be gradually announced (garbage bags, medical plastics, cosmetics and toiletries).
In 2023, the Government of Canada will develop new labelling standards related to the “recyclable” mark on products and labelling regulations for biodegradable plastic products. After this regulation is in place, Canada will certainly issue specific instructions on banning the import of products with the plastic packaging that do not bear the recycling symbol.
According to the Vietnam Trade Office in Canada, in 2012-2021, the import value of processed food products that Vietnam has strength in the Canadian market has nearly doubled, from USD 54 million in 2012 to USD 100 million in 2021. Furthermore, thanks to tax incentives from the CPTTP Agreement, the group of processed foods is one of the products that recorded very strong growth. Specifically, for the group of tea, coffee and spices, the growth rate in the period 2018-2021 was 52%; cereal products (rice paper, rice noodles, cornstarch, rice flour) had a growth rate of 46.8%; the group of nuts, fruit jams, and juices had a growth rate of 53%.
The Vietnam Trade Office in Canada recommends that Vietnamese processed food manufacturers pay attention to Canada’s new regulations on plastic waste. This is Canada’s overall strategy to eliminate plastic waste by 2030 and move towards a circular economy in the plastic industry. This strategy is expected to reduce CO2 emissions by an average of 1.8 million tons per year, generate billions of dollars in profits and create 42,000 new jobs.
Canadian businesses are aggressively looking for recyclable packaging suppliers
Although there is no mandatory regulation on the labelling of plastic packaging bearing the recycling symbol, Canadian processed food businesses have begun to aggressively design and find suppliers of various types of food packaging of recyclable plastic.
Basse Company, a large Canadian producer and packaging company of nuts and fruit jams specializing in supplying or processing for major North American brands and supermarket chains, including Costco, has shared with Service in Vietnam in Canada about the company’s plan to convert all packaging by 2023. Basse has imported preliminarily processed goods from Vietnam and packed them in Canada under OEM processing contracts. Basse is moving towards setting up a factory in Vietnam and packing in Vietnam and is very interested in Vietnam’s packaging design and manufacturing capabilities.
It is expected that the new requirements for packaging plastic products will focus on recycled content (e.g. resins), the recycling method developed according to the recommendations of recycling facilities in Canada. In addition, Canada will restrict products that use non-essential multi-packaging. When importing goods into Canada, retail businesses will certainly set these requirements on Vietnamese manufacturers. Therefore, Vietnamese businesses need to work together to develop more sustainably and circularly.
Ms Nguyen Thi Bich Thuy – Senior Program Manager of the Department of Economic Development and Governance at the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) said that at present, the packaging is not just a product protection tool, but also plays a great role in increasing product value, giving customers the credibility and commitment of the business on the true parameters, displayed on the product packaging. In particular, packaging also has a direct impact on the brand strength index. It has become indispensable competitiveness, which is an indispensable part of a business’s marketing strategy for the Canadian market when Vietnamese goods have now been exported to nearly 200 countries and territories around the world.
|Paper, packaging firms see bright prospects ahead|
Paper and packaging enterprises are optimistic about their prospectsnbsp;this year thanks to Viet Nam’s stable business situation.
Following the growth of the food industry, the packaging and plastic industry also developed well, with an average growth rate of more than 25% per year. Accordingly, many businesses have invested in new technology lines, providing the market with many types of high-class packaging, and meeting strict standards of food hygiene and safety.
By M.H/Bui Diep