Who checks that the environmental labeling on the packaging is compliant and correct? Who is the person in charge of imposing the sanctions?

The Provinces are the bodies responsible for the control and eventual imposition of sanctions.

The competences and jurisdictions regarding the verification of the correct application of the rules relating to the management of packaging and, therefore, also on the issue of environmental labeling of the same, as well as any related administrative sanctions, are governed by the Environmental Code in art. 262, paragraph 1 which reads verbatim: “Without prejudice to the other provisions of law no. 689 in the matter of ascertaining administrative offenses, the province in whose territory the violation was committed shall provide for the imposition of the administrative pecuniary sanctions provided for in part four of this decree. <<…>>”.


How will the investigations be carried out?

Although the law does not specify how the investigations will be carried out, it is assumed that the Province will carry out the checks, both “randomly” and on the possible notification of a consumer or other person.

Since it would in fact be an administrative offense, the consumer or other interested party has the right to report to the competent authority the fact that a specific packaging has a mandatory environmental labeling that does not comply with the provisions of art. 219, paragraph 5, Legislative Decree 152/2006, or do not present it at all.

How is the sanction applied?

Once the checks have been carried out, in case of ascertained violation of the obligation, the Province will apply the relative sanction pursuant to the provisions of art. 11 of Law 689/19814 (according to which the criteria for the application of administrative pecuniary sanctions are established).

If the violation affects multiple packaging, as it is presumed to happen in most cases, the sanction will not be applied “cumulatively” in relation to the single packaging with non-compliant environmental labeling, but this circumstance – it is assumed – may determine a greater “severity of the violation “. The administrative body in charge will therefore be able to evaluate whether to apply a sanction closer to the maximum limit, also considering the other parameters provided for by the aforementioned regulation, or the work carried out by the obliged subject to eliminate or mitigate the consequences of the violation of the environmental labeling obligations of the packaging, the personality of the obliged subject, as well as his economic conditions.

Last modified on 21/11/2021

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