Defra publishes MRF code of conduct

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The Department of environment, food and rural affairs (Defra) has published its Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) Code of Practice and Quality Action Programme, which is aimed at improving the quality of dry recyclates from household and commercial waste in the UK.

The plan, unveiled by Resource Management Minister, Lord de Mauley, is now open for consultations. It forms part of the wider revision of the European Waste Framework Directive.

Commenting on the document, Chris Dow, chief executive of Closed Loop Recycling, said: “[This] much anticipated announcement by Defra’s Lord de Mauley about the MRF Code of Practice consultation is the Government’s first major step towards realising its plans to become the greenest government ever.

“We at Closed Loop Recycling agree with the Environmental Servcies Association and other industry leaders that all aspects of the scheme must be mandatory and enforced via the Environmental Permit regime.

"It is absurd to believe that the illegal exporters would join the scheme if voluntary. We also believe that independent audits should be unannounced and should include physical sampling by the independent auditor,” continued Dow.

“With a mandatory MRF Code of Practice, greater enforcement of the Trans-Frontier Ships Regulations and a review of the PRN/PERN system, UK re-processors will feel confident to invest in additional capacity, which will lead to the creation of substantial numbers of green jobs and will reduce the UK's imports of virgin raw materials.”