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Joint recycling effort

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Twelve manufacturers have formed a company to manage the recycling obligations set out under the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment directive.

The European law makes manufacturers responsible for discarded electrical and electronic consumer products and should come into effect in August 2005.

The company, called the Recycling Electrical Producers Industry Consortium, or Repic, includes firms such as Alba, Glen Dimplex, Hoover Candy and Philips. It should begin operating in spring.

The Association of Manufacturers of Domestic Electrical Appliances and IntellectUK will help their member companies to establish Repic, with the Small Electrical Appliance Marketing Association offering support. The not-for-profit consortium hopes other firms will join. It is open to producers from the consumer electronics, domestic appliance and small appliance sectors. This also includes import agents and some retailers.

The government will ask all electrical producers to register as such between August this year and June 2005. The Department of Trade and Industry proposes that these producers each disclose their sales data so that market share and the subsequent responsibility for waste products be determined. In response, Repic will provide recycling services and help the authorities determine market size, so that producers do not take on unfair responsibility.

The 12 member firms will each supply £30,000 to launch the company and will provide a loan of £20,000 for two years. The founder member list will be open for any other firms to join until the end of March. There will be a founder membership fee of £10,000, with a lower rate for SMEs. After the 31 March deadline, however, the membership fee will be £30,000, or £6,000 for SMEs.

Over 200 other companies eligible to join REPIC will shortly receive a letter, which will explain the advantages of joining and invite them to sign up.

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