Kong pays out for green projects after breaking packaging rules

Kong Company Ltd supplies dog toys from its factory on the High Post Business Park on the outskirts of Salisbury. Its primary product is a rubber dog toy called ‘Kong’. Designed and manufactured in the USA, this toy is imported into the UK for distribution across Europe from Salisbury. The company also sells toys produced in China.

Kong Company Ltd made the Enforcement Undertaking (EU) offer after the Environment Agency found it had broken packaging waste regulations.

The donation will be used by Salisbury-based charity, The Species Recovery Trust, to help fund three projects including the Salisbury Drinking Fountain Campaign that aims to reduce the number of single use water bottles purchased in the city centre and ultimately reduce plastic waste.

The money will also be used to help two endangered plants – the heath lobelia and the marsh clubmoss. The Species Recovery Trust will work with partner organisations including Natural England, Hampshire Rare Plant Group, Millennium Seed Bank and Devon Wildlife Trust to improve the habitats and increase the populations of both these plant species.

Tessa Bowering for the Environment Agency said:

Enforcement Undertakings are a type of civil sanction that allow us to secure regulatory compliance from organisations. They also ensure businesses don’t profit from non-compliance and provide an opportunity for them to react responsibly to any offending.

The Species Recovery Trust is an appropriate recipient of this payment because the project they are funding looks to reduce the amount of plastic packaging waste through the reduction of single use plastic bottles.

Kong Company Ltd saved £3,792 by failing to register with a packaging recovery scheme for the years 2012-2015 inclusive. Its finance director admitted three offences under the Producer Responsibility Obligations (Packaging Waste) Regulations of 2007 including failing to register and take reasonable steps to recover and recycle waste packaging and failing to submit certificates of compliance to the appropriate Agency.

A spokesman for the company said: “We are now fully compliant and wouldn’t have contravened the regulations had we been aware of our obligations at the time.”

Notes:

The packaging waste regulations ensure packaging materials such as cardboard, plastics and glass are recycled and do not end up in landfill. Companies with a turnover of £2 million or more and handle over 50 tonnes of packaging per year must ensure a certain percentage is recycled. They do this by registering with a packaging scheme or directly with the Environment Agency and provide evidence its packaging waste has been dealt with correctly.

Enforcement Undertakings are voluntary offers from offenders to address the cause and effect of their offending. If accepted, an EU becomes a legally binding agreement between the Environment Agency and the offender and replaces the need for any other civil or criminal sanction, such as prosecution.

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