How to Benefit From Your Waste Packaging Reporting

18 October 2020By ellie Reuseabox

How to Benefit From Your Waste Packaging Reporting

The Packaging Waste Regulations were introduced in 1997, aiming to control the amount of waste packaging being produced and put into the environment. All certificates of compliance should have been submitted by the 31st of January for the previous year. Looking forwards we thought we’d offer some ideas on how you can work on becoming more eco-friendly which in turn will reduce your PRN obligation over the coming year.


What is a PRN?

PRNs or Packaging Waste Recovery Notes must be completed by any company with an annual turnover of more than £2 million and who handle over 50 tonnes of packaging annually. Companies who are legally obliged must submit their certificate of compliance by the 31st of January the following year.

The regulations require companies to take responsibility for the environmental impact of their packaging. Companies must pay an amount per tonne of packaging to help towards the costs of recovery and recycling.


How can Cardboard Box Reuse Help?

Traditionally, companies are most likely to order brand new bespoke cardboard boxes to pack their products in. These are likely to be manufactured from virgin board or may contain some recycled board.

An eco-friendly alternative is to pack in once used cardboard boxes. As you are reusing existing cardboard boxes, no boxes have be manufactured for you to pack your products. The PRN obligation currently only applies to new packaging. Therefore if you choose to pack your products in once used cardboard boxes, the PRNs do not apply saving you both time and money and most importantly, helping the environment!


Take a look at Cardboard Box Reuse in action:


Case Study: The Sports Supplements Company


This company came to Reuseabox to help them complete an order when their original supplier had let them down during a particularly busy period. They packed bottles and plastic pots of food supplements targeted towards athletes. Reuseabox were able to supply them with once used cardboard boxes that were almost identical, at a much lower price. See how their buying prices compared:

Box Specification   Price from Old Supplier

(Brand New Boxes)

  Price from Direct Cardboard Boxes

(Once Used Boxes)

Single wall, size: 490 x 360 x 190mm 44p per box 18p per box
  Heavy duty single wall, size: 590 x 390 x 430mm £1.05 per box 59p per box
Strong double wall, size: 420 x 320 x 300mm 50p per box 30p per box
Double wall, size: 390 x 270 x 280mm 39p per box 22p per box


They were able to offset some of their PRN obligations by declaring that they had purchased sustainable once used cardboard boxes. This reduced their PRN charge by £1,701.00


Calculation of PRN Saving:

Pallets purchased: 243

Tonnage: 48.6 tonnes

PRN tax applied to 48.6 tonnes of new cardboard: £1,701.00

100% offset by using sustainable once used cardboard boxes


The Sports Supplements Company were impressed with the cost savings and were surprised with the quality of the used cardboard boxes. Eco-friendly packing tape was supplied for securing the boxes branded with “We Reuse to Save Trees”.


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