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Disposables for food 047

Disposables for food encompasses take-away packaging such as coffee mugs and pizza boxes, containers and paper for wrapped food, disposables such as mugs, glasses, plates, cutlery and straws, bags and films for packaging food such as bread bags, freezer bags, fruit and vegetables, coffee and tea filters, toothpicks, cocktail sticks and mixing sticks. There are strict requirements for raw materials and chemicals used in the production of Nordic Swan Ecolabelled disposables focusing on environmental and health aspects. Requirements help to promote increased recycling, reduce product environmental impact, contribute to reduced use of fossil raw materials and avoid biodiversity loss.

The requirements include:

  • A Nordic Swan Ecolabelled disposable for food must be produced with a high proportion of renewable material or recycled plastic.
  • Prohibition of fluorine compounds, phthalates, bisphenol A, flavours, perfumes and PVC.
  • Environmental and health properties of adhesives and dyes.
  • Marking with sorting symbol / text.
  • The wood products must be determined and certified.
  • Prohibition of recycled paper, paperboard and cardboard.

The Disposables for food criteria consist of three documents; the criteria document below as well as the "Basic Module" and the "Chemical module". Please download these here:

  • Fees valid from 1 January 2019

    Application fee

    Application fee including one on-site inspection within the Nordic region *) 30 000 SEK excl. VAT.
    Renewal fee *) 15 000 SEK excl. VAT.

    Annual licence fee

    Annual Nordic licence fee**) 0,3 % of the licence's annual turnover in the Nordic countries excl. VAT
    Minimum fee for the Nordic countries 2 000 EUR annually excl. VAT
    Maximum fee for the Nordic countries No maxiumum fee
    Annual licence fee outside the Nordic countries (for licence holders with a turnover of more than 300 000 EUR of Nordic Swan ecolabelled products, sold outside the Nordic countries) 2 000 EUR annually excl. VAT

    If the Nordic Swan ecolabelled products are only sold outside the Nordic countries, a minimum fee is always charged.

    Fee for extensions/alterations of licence

    Extension/alteration of existing licence The fee is based on how long it takes to handle the matter:
    - Less than 4 hours: 3 750 SEK excl. VAT
    - Between 4 and 8 hours: 7 500 SEK excl. VAT
    - More than 8 hours: 15 000 SEK excl. VAT

    Fees for on-site inspections:

    Extra fee for additional on-site inspection within the Nordic countries 5 000 SEK excl. VAT per visit
    On-site inspection outside the Nordic region, but within Europe***) 15 000 SEK excl. VAT per visit
    On-site inspections outside Europe***) 25 000 SEK excl. VAT per visit

    Euro rate: The exchange rate of the first day of the year is used to convert amounts in Euro to national currency.

    *) Micro enterprises are charged half the fee. A micro enterprise, according to our definition, is a company with a maximum of 10 employees and with a total turnover of 2 million EUR (including both ecolabelled and non-ecolabelled products).

    **) Corporations pay only one licence fee

    ***) There is an extra fee of 1 000 EUR per day if the inspection takes more than one day.

  • Information on the latest version of the criteria for disposables for food

    4.5 ⇛ 4.6 Adjustment of criteria

    An adjustment in requirement O15 regarding exemption for BHT up to 2 ppm in water-repellent cardboard layers in disposable articles. The new version is called 4.6 and valid until June 30, 2023.

    4.4 ⇛ 4.5 Adjustment of criteria

    An adjustment in requirement O19 has been made. The new version is called 4.5 and is valid until 30 June 2023.

    4.3 ⇛ 4.4: Prolongation of the criteria and adjustment

    The criteria's validity has been prolonged with 12 months. At the same time, an adjustment of requirement O30 regarding recycling marking has been made. The new version, 4.4, is valid until 30 June 2023.

    4.2 ⇛ 4.3: Prolongation of the criteria

    The criteria's validity has been prolonged with 12 months. The new version, 4.3, is valid until 30 June 2022.

    4.1 ⇛ 4.2 Adjustment of criteria

    The definition of the product group has been changed not allowing disposables for food made of plastics anymore. At the same time an adjustment regarding D6 in requirement O18 has been made and a reference to the same requirement has been added in O15. The new version is called 4.2 and is valid until 30 June 2021.

    4.0 ⇛ 4.1 Adjustment of criteria

    Adjustment in requirement O19 Dyes used for paper / cardboard / carton and accompanying appendix 4c. In addition, the return system requirement was removed. The new version is 4.1 and is valid until 30 June 2021.

    4.0 New generation of criteria

    Version 4.0 for Nordic Ecolabelling's criteria for Disposables for food har been published.The criteria are valid until 30 Juni 2021.

    3.4 ⇛ 3.5: Prolongation of the criteria

    The criteria's validity has been prolonged with 6 months. The new version, 3.5, is valid until June 30th 2019.

    3.3 ⇛ 3.4: Adjustment and prolongation of the criteria

    • Recycling has been added as an alternative to composting for all product types in requirement O23. Requirement O24 was also updated according to this change.
    • The criteria's validity was prolonged with 18 months.

    The new version, 3.4, is valid until December 31st 2018.

    3.2 ⇛ 3.3: Adjustment of the criteria

    Requirement O14 regarding energy comsumption in polymer production has been updated. The new version, 3.3, is valid until June 30th 2017.

    3.1 ⇛ 3.2: Prolongation of the criteria

    The criteria's validity has been prolonged with 15 months. Also, requirement O36 Marketing was removed. The new version, 3.2, is valid until June 30th 2017.

    3.0 ⇛ 3.1: Adjustment of criteria

    An adjustment of the text in requirements R1 and R2 has been made. Minor changes have also been made to other regulations according to the adjustments in R1 and R2. The new version, 3.1, is valid until March 31st 2016.

  • In order to use the Nordic Swan Ecolabel in your marketing, you must have a valid Nordic Swan Ecolabel licence. Please log in to The Nordic Ecolabelling Portal to apply for a licence. You are free to use the Nordic Swan Ecolabel in all of your marketing from the date of approval until your licence expires.

    Go to The Nordic Ecolabelling Portal and start your application process! If this is the first time you apply, please contact to receive login information for the Portal.

    Start by going through the requirements and fees that apply to your specific product group. These can be found above.

    In some cases, you must use our separate application form. For example, the form must be used in cases where the producer and licensee are two separate companies, or if you wish to cancel a licence. Please contact your advisor in these cases, or if you are unsure what applies to you. The form to be used in these special cases can be downloaded here.

    For more details on the application process, please head to our application guide: "Application step by step".

    Good luck with your application!

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