Brussels, 12h July 2023
The Federation of European Sporting Goods Industry (FESI), the leading voice representing the sporting goods sector in Europe, welcomes today’s adoption by the European Parliament of the report on the European Sustainable Product Regulation (ESPR) proposal. FESI commends the Parliament’s efforts in recognizing the trade-offs involved in establishing ecodesign requirements, a crucial step towards advancing sustainability and environmental responsibility within our industry.
FESI represents, directly and indirectly, more than 1.800 sports brands, manufacturers, retailers, and national federations, working towards keeping the environmental impacts of sporting goods within planetary boundaries. The sporting goods sector envisions a future built on a circular system, one that embraces durable products crafted from safe and sustainably sourced materials. Such a system should be built around a smart mix of circular business models based on reuse, repair, and recycle.
With this in mind, FESI fully supports the objective of the European Sustainable Product Regulation (ESPR) proposal and most particularly the need to make goods placed on the Union market more sustainable. Concurrently, the Federation welcomes the recognition by the European Parliament of potential trade-offs linked with the establishment of the ecodesign requirements, such as durability, recyclability, and recycled content.
However, FESI would like to express some deep concerns regarding the Parliament’s position on certain provisions around the ban on the destruction of unsold goods. While the destruction of unsold goods suitable for sale should of course be avoided, the current proposed scope remains unclear. FESI therefore advocates for specific derogations for certain types of goods, in line with the objectives of other legislative proposals currently on the table. If we want to scale up the amount of recycled and recyclable materials in the EU, then recycling should for example not be considered as ‘destruction’ as this may lead to misalignment with other EU legislation, such as the waste hierarchy enshrined in the Waste Framework Directive or the objectives of the EU Textile Strategy on textile-to-textile recycling.
Commenting on the above, FESI Secretary General Jérôme Pero said: “We welcome the Parliament’s work on providing further clarification linked to the ban on unsold goods, in particular, regarding the reporting obligations and the list of exemptions, with the inclusion of counterfeit products. However, we regret that products not allowed to be placed on the market due to contractual obligations were not included.”
FESI supports the European Parliament’s recognition of the vital role that confidential business information plays in fostering innovation, protecting intellectual property, and promoting competitiveness within the European market. We firmly believe that safeguarding sensitive commercial data is essential for businesses to thrive in today’s dynamic landscape. However, we are concerned about the potential implications of reporting requirements on this topic. Striking a delicate balance between preserving business secrets and ensuring transparency in reporting is crucial for maintaining trust, accountability, and compliance with regulatory frameworks.
Regarding the implementation, FESI calls for strengthening the enforcement and following level playing field for economic operators that are compliant with the proposal while placing products on the EU market regardless of the sale channels they are operating.
In conclusion, FESI firmly believes that effective environmental policies require holistic coherence and cooperation among all stakeholders involved. As the voice of the sporting goods industry, FESI is committed to actively engaging with the European Parliament and other relevant stakeholders to ensure that the ESPR reflects the best interests of our industry, the environment, and society as a whole.
About FESI: The Federation of the European Sporting Goods Industry (FESI) is the pre-competitive platform representing the interests of the sporting goods industry in Europe, advancing its members’ priorities and promoting initiatives that benefit the sector, EU citizens and the society as a whole. FESI is the sole stakeholder that provides sporting goods companies with the possibility to leverage their expertise into one steady and coherent voice.
Contact: Ariane Gatti, FESI Communication Manager / [email protected] /+32 (0)2 762 86 48