March 2022
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AFSP Webinar Series – Q1 Round-up 
Project progress highlights and upcoming milestones 
Sustainability stories and latest industry updates 
From the Project Coordinators' desk 
Upcoming events 

AFSP Monthly WS Meetings 
WS1: Calculation methods
5 July, 10:00-12:00 (CET) 
WS3: Advocacy 
7 July, 10:00-12:00 (CET) 
WS2: Waste management 
30 August, 10:00-12:00 (CET) 
AFSP Annual meeting 
27 September 2022 9:00-12:00
Hotel Las Arenas Balneario Resort, Valencia, Spain
Afera 65th Annual Conference 
28-30 September 2022
Hotel Las Arenas Balneario Resort, Valencia, Spain
More industry events
ISSUE 4, 1 JUly 2022
Hello and welcome to the special sustainability edition with the latest updates from AFSP.
AFSP Webinar Series 
Q1 Round-up
In March 2022, the first general progress presentation of Afera’s Flagship Sustainability Project (AFSP) took place in the form of a webinar series. Project coordinator, Pablo Englebienne, presented the progress highlights from all three project workstreams to Afera members over the course of two webinars, which also featured two guest speakers from FEICA – Dr. Heinz Werner Lucas and Ms. Jana Cohrs.

In the first webinar that covered the topics in the scope of workstreams 1 (calculation of environmental impact) and 2 (waste management), Dr. Heinz Werner Lucas, expert consultant at FEICA, presented a general overview of Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) and spoke in detail regarding the model EPD system for Construction Products. He also shared a few ideas on how Afera and the tapes industry could potentially benefit from this approach.

Jana Cohrs, Executive Director of Regulatory Affairs at FEICA, participated in the follow-up webinar that focused on workstream 3 (advocacy) and shared the Regulatory Priorities of 2022 for the adhesives and sealants industry.

To learn more, read the full summary here
Project progress highlights

Let's look at some of the most important updates from each of the workstreams: 


WS1 – Calculation Methods

In addition to its continued focus on Product Carbon Footprint (PCF), WS1 is also looking into Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs). Model EPDs enable manufacturers to use the same defined framework with a clear definition of the frame conditions. They can also be a very valuable source of information to go into PEF (Product Enviromental Footprint) that will be more relevant and could become mandatory in the near future.

At present, WS1 participants are actively working on the grouping of tapes and tape materials. The high-level grouping of individual tape components, which includes (1) carrier; (2) adhesives; (3) liner; (4) coatings; (5) packaging; and (6) the manufacturing process, is complete. The next steps on the agenda are to identify the raw materials for each group and identify sources for product carbon footprint data. It was agreed that categorization with respect to the components is the most straightforward starting position and data collection from participants is currently underway. Further, the calculation method will have to be agreed on for each component group.  

A survey requesting commitment from Afera members for the development of harmonised PCF calculation methods is currently on-going and is open for participation. Discussions are also on-going with external parties such as CEPI (PCF for the paper industry), FEICA (EPDs for adhesives & sealants), and Sphera (LCA consulting) to capture recommendations and best practices in order to harmonise calculation methods of PCF and EPDs for tapes. 


WS2 – Waste Management

Through further discussions, WS2 found that the tape release liner waste is very scattered and the collection and sorting remain the biggest challenge to develop a tape release liner recycling program. More information on the available volume, the quality and the distribution of the release liner waste is needed. Beyond paper, filmic release liner is also being looked at. WS2 is currently collecting further insights through an open survey targetting all tape liner waste holders: tape manufacturers, converters and tape users. Your input and promotion of the survey within your network is very welcome! LinkedIn post


On the topic of colour harmonisation of release liners, Sappi shared the results of the survey organised by CELAB. Some of the key findings include: 
(1) Having one colour simplifies the whole process and the logistics are easier.  
(2) Blue and brown liners are considered critical and CELAB recommends making all release liner papers white or light yellow. 

To build up the scale, Afera and CELAB are currently assessing synergies. Some of the open questions to be addressed include: 
(1) What is the size of the market (liner and matrix)? 
(2) Where does it become waste (sector and geographical areas)? 
(3) Interest in the tape industry to move to a lighter colour?      

At the Afera Tape College event, there was a lot of interest in understanding the potential of chemical recycling to recycle adhesive coated plastics and WS2 will be pursuing this topic further along with the recycling of tape and surface protection waste.    


WS3 – Advocacy

With the Product Environmental Footprint (PEF) legislation expected to be presented later this year, it may become mandatory to provide proof for sustainability claims and the Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive (PPWD) would make the recycled content more relevant too. As already identified, ISCC PLUS is one of the most recognised certifications in this space. Upstream players in the tape value chain are quite active already and WS3 anticipates that ISCC certification could become a part of the value proposition for tape manufacturers in the near future as well. 

Therefore, WS3 has prioritised the development of a guidance document that aims to provide Afera members with information on the possibilities and requirements for ISCC certification to comply with upcoming changes in legislation. Scheduled to be released within this quarter, this document will be useful for tape manufacturers either for their new tape development or for re-certification of existing tapes.  

WS3 is also keeping a close watch on the impact of the UK Plastic Packaging Tax (PPT) on tapes and a document is being prepared to help tape manufacturers and buyers understand more about the products that are liable for the tax, exemption criteria, and how the tax is calculated specifically for tapes. The impact of PPT on the supply of bulk raw materials is also being assessed. 

Also, under development at the moment are documents containing (1) interpretations of the impact of the Single-use Plastics Directive (SUPD) on the tape industry and (2) guidelines for the sustainable use of tapes in packaging applications. Having reviewed existing design for recycling (DfR) guidelines in packaging applications, WS3 plans to engage with organizations such as RecyClass (for plastic packaging – hard containers and films) and CEPI/4evergreen (for fibre-based packaging) to understand what could be implemented for tapes. The guidelines will also include the impact of recyclability on the choice and design of tapes. 

Additionally, WS3 is reviewing the new draft legal texts of the Sustainable Products Regulation (SPR), the revision of the Construction Product Regulation (CPR), Strategy for Sustainable and Circular Textiles, and the Proposal for empowering consumers for the green transition. 

Upcoming milestones
WS Project Milestones - 2022  Timelime 
WS1 Finalise inventory of the available data  Q1 2022
WS1 Formalise calculation method of carbon footprint data for all adhesives tapes     Q4 2022
WS1 Make a sector-wide tool for the adhesive tapes industry available   Q1 2023 
WS2               Define Afera strategy for release liner recycling   Q2 2022
WS2 Prepare database of collectors and recyclers of release liners and tape waste   Q2 2022
WS2  Gather data on release liner waste generation, collection and recycling from manufacturers, converters, and users (tape waste -point sources)   Q3 2022
WS3 Release document on impact of SUPD on tape industry  Q2 2022
WS3 Release guidelines on ISCC PLUS certification for tapes   Q2 2022
WS3              Release guidelines on sustainable use of tapes for packaging applications  Q2 2022
WS3 Release guidelines on impact of UK PPT for tape industry  Q3 2022
Sustainability stories and latest industry updates 
1. EU Green Deal: Analysing the Regulatory Impact on Tapes Industry 
In recent years, several new regulations and initiatives have come up – the most significant one being the European Green Deal. With major strategies like the Chemical Strategy for Sustainability and the Circular Economy Action Plan, there is additional pressure to increase the sustainability of the complete value chain by optimizing the use of resources, reducing waste, and avoiding hazardous substances. 

Sreeparna Das spoke to Pablo Englebienne, Regulatory Affairs Manager at Afera, to find out more about the latest developments in European policies, their impact on the adhesive tape value chain, and Afera’s role in monitoring and anticipating key regulatory developments and providing concrete approaches to contribute to the EGD. Read the full interview here. 

2. Afera Supports Packaging Industry’s Call for a Single Circular Economy within the EU Market
May 11, 2022: 60 European associations from the packaging value chain including Afera, FEICA, and FINAT signed a joint letter requesting the European Commission to take action to better harmonise sorting and labelling requirements for packaging to ensure the protection of the single market…read more  

3. New Sustainability Pages now Live on Afera Website
The homepage of the Afera website has been updated, thereby bringing sustainability front and centre. The new pages are aligned with our goal to communicate regularly on sustainability topics with a special focus on the AFSP updates and provide guidance to the tapes industry to support the transition to a circular economy...take a look! 
From the Project Coordinators' Desk

The AFSP is actively shaping the future of sustainability in the adhesive tape industry. We invite all experts from Afera member companies to contribute to the discussions in the relevant workstream meetings, as well as give feedback and promote the ongoing surveys being issued.  

If you would also like to participate in the AFSP Workstreams, please register your interest with us.

For any further questions, contact us at:  




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