The European Parliament has published a proposal for the revision of the Waste Directive

The European Union member states are governed by different types of legal instruments - some of them being binding, while the others are not. With respect to the waste issues the framework is given by the Directive 2008/98/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 19 November 2008 on waste and repealing certain Directives in the consolidated version (hereinafter referred to as „Waste Directive“). This Waste Directive obliges EU countries to introduce separate collection for textiles from 1 January 2025 (currently it applies to paper, metals, plastic and glass). Also in relation to this obligation, a revision of this Directive ('the draft Directive') was published in the Journal of the European Parliament on 5 July 2023.

Objectives and rationale for the revision of the Waste Directive

Directive revision does not only concern textiles, but also the food industry sector. Food production sector is the most demanding, and textile sector the fourth most demanding from the resources point of view, while in none of them the basic principles of EU waste management set out by the waste management hierarchy are fully observed. The high resource intensity results in significant environmental impacts. Thus, the Directive revision should lead to achievement of the following objectives:

  • Reduction of the environmental and climatic impacts, improved environmental quality and public health in relation to the handling of the textile waste in compliance with the waste management hierarchy;
  • Reduction of the environmental and climatic impacts of food processing systems in relation to generation of the food waste. Prevention of food waste generation should also contribute to the food safety.

Particular measures introduced by the Directive revision


In case of textile the EU selected a deviation from the usual methods of designing, production, exploitation and disposal of the textile products (which currently prevails), as a strategy in the sustainability and circularity of textiles with necessary limitation of the „fast fashion.“

The strategy considers important that the manufacturers of textile products which generate waste will take responsibility for this waste. It means the implementation of Extended Producer Responsibility to the textile with ecomodulation in the EU member states.

By EPR implementing the producers of textile, textile-related and footwear products will, according to the proposal, bear the costs of these activities, e.g. collection of used and waste textile, performance of composition surveys of the collected mixed municipal waste, provision of information on the sustainable consumption, waste generation prevention, reuse, preparation for reuse, support to research and development in order to improve the separation and recycling processes.

The producers will perform the described obligations pursuant to the directive proposal by means of Producer Responsibility Organizations. Of course, these organizations will take responsibility for fulfilling the obligations on behalf of the producers themselves, but also towards the end users.


Reducing food waste is necessary at all moments of its generation, i.e. from its appearance during the manufacture, processing, distribution phases, in the restaurants, catering facilities and households. Quantitative food waste reduction target to be achieved by the member states by 2030 should be defined.

The measures shall include, for example, information campaigns aimed at modified behavior in order to reduce the food waste generation, to identify and solve non-effective operation of food supply chain, encouraging food donation, giving priority to human consumption over the use of food as animal feed and the reprocessing into non-food products. Following targets shall be achieved by the implemented measures by 31 December 2030:

  • Reducing food waste generation in processing and production by 10 % compared to the volume generated in 2020;
  • Reducing food waste generation per capita, jointly in retail and other food distribution, in restaurants, catering facilities and households by 30 % compared to the volume generated in 2020.

The draft revision of the Directive will enter into force twenty days after its publication in the Official Journal of the European Union.


[1] Directive 2008/98/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 19 November 2008 on waste and repealing certain Directives in the consolidated version

[2] Draft Directive of the European Parliament and Council amending the Directive 2008/98/EC on waste [cit. 2023-10-02]