September 9, 2022 – As of January 1, 2022, the AGEC Law entered into force in France. The main objectives of the law are to reduce waste and promote a circular economy. Thus, among the provisions, there is the obligation to affix the Triman logo to improve waste collection and sorting.
Moreover, the AGEC Law sets a national strategy on plastic packaging. According to it, single-use plastic packaging shall be reduced by 20% by 2025 and eliminated by 2040.
The Triman logo
Article 17 of the AGEC Law states that all household products, including cosmetic products, must bear the Triman logo and sorting instructions (Info-Tri) for each packaging element. This information must appear outside the packaging to be easily visible to consumers. However, in multi-packaging products (for example, a cosmetic product sold in a tube within a box), the Info-Tri can appear on the outer packaging only and includes the information for all elements of the packaging or on both the outer and inner packaging.
The company that places the product on the market, namely the manufacturer or the importer, is responsible for complying with these requirements. Therefore, if you are a beauty brand based outside the EU, you must rely on your importer in France to meet the Info-Tri obligations.
As a general rule, the Triman logo applies to all household products, including samples and hotel toiletries. However, there are some exceptions:
- Glass beverage packaging;
- Packaging whose biggest side measures between 10 and 20 cm² (and without leaflet) must display the Triman but may supply the InfoTri by digital mean;
- Products without a leaflet and packaging whose biggest side measures less than 10 cm² or cylindrical or spherical packaging whose biggest side is less than 20 cm² are exempt from labelling requirements. However, the Triman logo and sorting instructions may be available electronically;
- For products without a leaflet and packaging whose biggest side measures between 10 and 20 cm² or cylindrical or spherical packaging whose biggest side has a surface area of between 20 cm² and 40 cm², the Triman logo must appear on the packaging. Still, the sorting instructions may be available via electronic means.
As of September 9, 2022, newly produced packaging must comply with the Triman logo requirements. Nevertheless, brands can sell products packaged before March 9, 2023, in packaging made before September 9, 2022, until they run out (without a deadline), even if they do not bear the Triman logo and aborting instructions to avoid the destruction of existing stocks.
Furthermore, the AGEC Law requires companies to provide the consumer with information on the products’ environmental characteristics and packaging. In particular, according to Article 13, manufacturers and importers shall inform consumers about the percentage of recycled material, durability, compostability, reparability, reusability, recyclability and the presence of hazardous substances at a concentration higher than 0.1% by mass percentage in the packaging or formula.
Legislative Decree No. 2021/1285 identifies the categories of those substances. They are the ones included in the candidate list of substances of very high concern under REACH and the ones with a comparable level of concern, including endocrine disruptors.
This information must be accessible electronically by the consumer at the time of purchase.
The French government wants to limit greenwashing. Hence, the AGEC Law prohibits using the claims ‘biodegradable’, ‘environmental friendly’, and any equivalent allegations. The ban applies as of April 30, 2022. Brands have time until January 1, 2023, to sell the products manufactured or imported before April 29, 2022, even if they do not comply with these restrictions.
In the next months, the French government will likely publish a guide clarifying which claims fall within the definition of equivalent claims and the use of the EU Ecolabel in France.
COSlaw collects the documents related to the labelling requirements in a dedicated section of the Library of documents — You can check it here.
If you are selling cosmetic products in France, contact your importer there to ensure compliance with the latest environmental requirements.
- Legifrance. (2021). Décret n° 2021-1285 du 1er octobre 2021 relatif à l’identification des substances dangereuses dans les produits générateurs de déchets. Retrieved on 26/08/2022
- Legifrance .(2020). LOI n° 2020-105 du 10 février 2020 relative à la lutte contre le gaspillage et à l’économie circulaire. Retrieved on 26/08/2022
- Agence de la transition écologiqu. (2015). User’s Handbook. Triman – Unified recycling signage and marking system. Retrieved on 26/09/2022