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The 2023 Plastics Tax: How This Will Affect Electrostatic Discharge (ESD) Protective Products

In an effort to reduce our global reliance on single-use plastics and their impact on the environment, the government has proposed a plastics tax for 2023. This tax will have an impact on the production and usage of electrostatic discharge (ESD) protective products. By understanding the implications of this proposed tax, businesses, industries, and consumers alike can make more informed decisions about their ESD product purchases. In this article, we’ll discuss how the 2023 plastics tax will affect the production and usage of ESD protective products.

What is the Plastics Tax 2023?

The Plastics Packaging Tax came into force in 2022 and is designed to incentivise businesses to use more recycled plastic in their packaging. According to the regulations, tax will need to be paid on plastic packaging that has been manufactured in the UK or imported into the UK if it does not contain at least 30% recycled plastic.

If manufacturers or importers produce or receive more than 10 tonnes of plastic packaging within a 12-month period, they are required to register for the plastic packaging tax. Similarly, if a company is forecast to produce or receive more than 10 tonnes of plastic packaging within the next 30 days, they must also register for the tax.

All records must be then submitted to HMRC for each quarter of imports and accurate PPT records must be recorded and kept for at least 6 years for each accounting period.

There are certain exemptions, including plastic packaging used for the immediate packaging of medical products, transport packaging that is used for imported goods or components that are used for something other than packaging.

What Does This Mean for ESD Control Products?

As many ESD control products are manufactured from plastics and used as packaging, they could be subject to the new tax. However, this depends on various factors, such as the percentage of recycled plastic used in the product, the amount produced or imported, etc.

While many people assume that the plastic packaging tax will apply to all ESD control products that are used in packaging, this isn’t the case. In fact, we stock a wide range of ESD moisture barrier bags, anti-static bubble bags and static shielding bags that are not subject to the plastics tax, including:

Moisture Barrier Bags

Designed to protect components and devices from both static damage and moisture damage, our moisture barrier bags can be used while goods are in transport or in storage. As cold or humid environments can cause a build-up of moisture that is capable of damaging static sensitive components, moisture barrier bags provide an extra layer of protection that keeps goods in optimal condition.

As our moisture barrier bags are made from at least 30% recycled plastic, they aren’t subject to the plastics packaging tax. For more information, see our moisture barrier bags construction document.

Metallised barrier bags supplied in packs of 100.

Pink Anti-Static Bags

Although pink anti-static bags don’t have static shielding properties, they are great for transporting non-ESD sensitive items into electrostatic protected areas (EPAs). When you need to move nuts and bolts into an EPA, for example, pink anti-static bags can be used to prevent electrostatic charge build-up and avoid subsequent damage occurring to ESD sensitive items.

Our ESD pink anti-static bags are made with at least 30% recycled plastics, so the plastic packaging tax does not apply to these products. For more information, see our pink anti-static bags construction document.

Pink Anti-Static Bags

Pink Anti-Static Bubble Bags

Anti-static bubble bags offer extra protection and help to prevent items from being damaged due to shock or abrasions. These are particularly useful when fragile ESD-sensitive components are being transported, as the extra protection they offer can help reduce the risk of damage occurring en route.

However, standard bubble bags rely on sealed air to provide extra cushioning and, when handled, it can produce static electricity. In contrast, our pink anti static bubble bags use air retention technology and specialist chemical additives to deliver anti-static properties. As a result, electrostatic charges won’t form inside the bag.

Our pink anti-static bubble bags are also produced using at least 30% recycled plastic, so aren’t subject to the new plastics packaging tax. For more information, see our pink anti-static bubble bags construction document.

Pink Anti Static Bubble Bags

Static Shielding Bags

When in use, a static shielding bag provides a conductive barrier around its contents to prevent ESD charges. This delivers a ‘Faraday Cage effect’, so you can be confident that items will be fully protected when transported or stored in static shielding bags.

Constructed using four layers, including a static dissipative coating, our static shielding bags are semi-transparent, compliant to RoHS, REACH and ESD standards and available as either open-top or loc-top resealable.

Our static shielding bags also contain at least 30% recycled plastic, so they aren’t liable for the plastics packaging tax. For more information, see our static shielding bags construction document.

Static Shielding Bags 3

High Shield Cushion Pouch

Also known as static shield cushion pouches, our high shield cushion pouches are designed to protect components from both mechanical damage and damage caused by electrostatic charges. The heat-sealable three-layer metallised cushion and static shielding film works together to provide complete protection to ESD sensitive items and are particularly useful for delicate assemblies.

Our high shield cushion pouches are also produced using at least 30% recycled plastic, so you won’t have to worry about the plastics packaging tax being applied to them either. For more information, see our high shield cushion pouch construction document.

Ground Image High Shield Cushion Pouch Bondline

What Does the Plastics Tax Mean for You?

When businesses are subject to new taxes or higher tax rates, these costs are usually passed on to the consumer. This means that you could end up paying more for your ESD control products, such as anti-static bubble bags or moisture barrier bags, but you don’t have to.

By choosing ESD bags that are manufactured using at least 30% recycled plastic, like those listed above from us at Bondline, you can ensure that the products you’re using to protect ESD-sensitive items aren’t subject to the plastic tax. As a result, you won’t end up paying more for your ESD control products.

Finding the Right ESD Control Products

Using suitable ESD control products helps to prevent unnecessary damage from occurring, which is essential when you’re working with, transporting, handling or storing items that are sensitive to electrostatic discharge.

At Bondline, our experienced team are always happy to assist you in finding the right ESD control products for your needs. To learn more, talk to our team now on 01793 511000 or email us at sales@bondline.co.uk.

Static Shielding Bag Packaging For Static Sensitive Components - Bondline

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