|Law Summary||Ordinance on Packaging and Packaging Waste (88/2015) and Regulation on management of waste packaging (97/2015) |
|Date Implemented||2005 (Amended in 2015 and 2020)|
|Beverages Not Covered||Milk and dairy products in containers >200mL.|
|Amount of Deposit||
|Fees and Taxes||
Manual collection fee: 0.05 HRK
RVM collection fee: 0.18 HRK 
|Recovery System||Return to retail|
2016 Results: Up to 87%
Croatia's Ordinance on Packaging and Packaging Waste is a broad-sweeping law that covers stewardship policies for all types of packaging materials. The ordinance covers "all packaging and packaging waste...used for containing, keeping, handling, delivery, and representation of goods, from raw material to final products, from manufacturer to users and consumers."  Beverage containers receive special consideration in the law, with their own fees and policies.
Packaging manufacturers are required to produce reusable or recyclable packaging up to date with available technology, and keep the levels of heavy metals in their packaging below a certain level. All producers that generate more than specified amounts of material are required to pay the expenses of collection, disposal, and recovery of their products' packaging. The ordinance requires all packaging material to be reused or recycled, except "packaging waste for which there are no conditions for recovery, pursuant to the Waste Act and regulations adopted on the basis of this Act." 
The Environmental Protection and Efficiency Fund (FZOEU) operates and administers the deposit system under the authority of the Ministry of Environment. All uncollected deposits remain with them to fund the system. Their responsibilities include "returning to the retailers the deposit paid to the customers; paying out handling fees to retailers; collecting data and deposit amounts from the producers; entering into agreements with authorized collectors and agree on the manner of payment of collection and transport costs; entering into agreements with authorized recyclers and agree on the manner of selling collected packaging; and checking and approving compatibility of the packaging to be collected via RVM." 
Producers pay a variety of fees in to the Fund when placing packaging on the market: a disposal fee, a returnable fee, and a stimulative fee. Large stores with a square footage ≥200 square meters are required to take back packaging for products that they sell. Stores must report on the materials collected and refunds given every quarter, and are compensated from the Fund. They pass on the collected packaging material to authorized transporters/processors, and the Fund compensates these collectors. Alternatively, consumers may return their containers at reverse vending machines (RVMs). As of 2020, over 90% of all deposits are returned manually. 
Every quarter, beverage producers must pay three fees on the containers they introduce into the market: the Returnable fee, the Disposal fee, and the Stimulative fee.
Single-use beverage containers carry a "Returnable fee." This fee is initially paid to the Fund by producers who first place packaging on the market. Reusable containers are exempt from this fee. Manufacturers must pay for the new amount of packaging placed on the market minus the amount of old packaging delivered directly to the recycling factory. Producers who organize the collection of their own materials, and collect more than 50% of what they put on the market, are exempt from this fee.  However, if they fail to meet that threshold, then they lose the right to collect their own packaging, and the responsibilities fall to the Fund.
They must also pay a nonrefundable "disposal fee." While other packaging types' disposal fee varies by material and volume, the fee for beverage containers is a uniform 0.10 HRK per unit. Reusable packaging is not subject to this fee.
Additionally, producers that do not sell reusable containers are required to pay a "Stimulative fee," to encourage the producer to use multiple-use, returnable packaging. Each type of packaging has a National Target of returnable packaging share, displayed in the table below. Once a producer has sold a sufficient proportion of any given type of container for multiple use in the previous year, then the stimulative fee no longer needs to be paid for that container that year. Small producers are not required to pay the stimulative fee.
|Material||Volume||Stimulative Fee (HRK/unit)|
|up to 0.25||0.3|
Sellers who collect packaging from consumers, and in turn give it to a recovery and disposal company, are entitled to a fee of 0.15 HRK per container, paid from the Fund. This compensation is only available to sellers who sort their returned packaging material by type (glass, paper, etc.)  This amount is not referred to as a handling fee, but it seems to serve the same purpose as the handling fee in many other systems. Sellers are also refunded the full amount of the returnable fee.
The Fund also compensates those who are authorized to collect and store empty containers, as well as those who transport empty containers.
"Global Deposit Book 2020: An Overview of Deposit Systems for One-Way Beverage Containers." Reloop Inc. 15 December 2020.
"Decree amending the ordinance on packaging and packaging waste." Government of Croatia. 2020.
 "ORDINANCE ON PACKAGING AND PACKAGING WASTE." Government of Croatia.
 See footnote 1.
 See footnote 1.
 See footnote 3.
 See footnote 3.
Last Updated on 4 June 2021.