GPF Product Stewardship Scheme

How it works

What’s it all about?

This voluntary product stewardship scheme aims to ensure that as much container glass as possible is diverted from landfill to benefit New Zealand’s community and the environment.

It was the first packaging scheme and the second product stewardship scheme for any product or industry to be accredited under the Waste Minimisation Act 2008. The scheme has now been reaccredited until 2024.

What glass is included?

The scope of the scheme currently covers over 80% of container glass on the market in New Zealand, primarily for food and beverages.

It includes New Zealand’s only manufacturer of glass bottles and jars as well as those manufacturing, distributing and selling products in glass containers. Companies using a significant volume of glass packaging are encouraged to become members of the GPF.

What’s not included?

Glass that is not a bottle or jar is not included.

For example, light bulbs, fluorescent tubes, pyrex dishes, glass ovenware, china and crockery, window glass, laboratory glass containers, TV tubes and computer screens, etc.

Funded by members

The scheme is funded by voluntary levies from companies that make or import glass containers, fill or sell glass containers in New Zealand.

These levies are used to fund projects, research, infrastructure and educational programmes to increase the recycling and re-use of glass into either new glass containers or for alternative uses that lead to a reduction in waste container glass to landfill.

Product Stewardship Scheme

Who is involved?

What is product stewardship?

Product stewardship moves responsibility for waste to those involved in the production and supply of the product (and its packaging). It involves those who know the most about the product – the businesses who make and sell it – in designing the solution.

Legislative Framework

The Waste Minimisation Act 2008 provides a regulatory framework for the establishment of product stewardship for key products. Most product stewardship schemes will be voluntary but mandatory schemes could be required where there is “significant advantage in having a product stewardship scheme, but this is either unlikely to be developed, or an existing voluntary scheme is not effective” (Waste Minimisation in New Zealand: A discussion document from the Ministry for the Environment).


Members of the Forum have all signed written declarations confirming their commitment to the Glass Packaging Forum Constitution and automatically become members of the scheme.

Representatives from local government, recyclers and community groups are part of an expert advisory group to the Forum’s steering group to ensure that decisions with regard to funding and direction are also influenced by those collecting and recycling glass.


This levy is imposed on:

  •  Producers of glass and importers of glass – both empty and filled
  • Glass fillers in New Zealand
  • Retailers of products in glass packaging

The levy is applied at each stage of the packaging cycle i.e. (1) manufacture (2) filling and (3) sales. Each participating company pays a levy based on the weight of glass which they use in product or sell to customers. The levy is used to fund objectives which deliver and improve glass recovery.

Duration of the scheme

Under the legislation the maximum duration for a scheme is seven years. The scheme was first accredited in 2010 and reaccredited in 2017.

Scheme objectives

The scheme covers:

  • The design and specification of glass packaging to minimise use of resources.
  • Funding to increase the recovery of glass containers and improve the glass recycling rate by diverting waste container glass from landfill for use in the manufacture of new glass containers or for alternate use
  • Consumer awareness and education programmes
  • Work to reduce the carbon footprint of glass packaging
  • Research into improving the collection of glass and finding alternative uses and specifications for the recovered materials
  • A fundamental requirement of any scheme is that it can only include objectives over which it has direct control

Scheme Manager

3R Group Ltd are the current scheme managers and are responsible for:

  • Working with stakeholders to improve outcomes for glass
  • Reporting annually on the performance of the scheme and compliance to it
  • Reporting recovery and recycling rates; conducting consumer and education awareness programmes; and improving communications with local government and community groups.
  • Collating data from members and other stakeholders to demonstrate progress towards reducing the amount of glass waste to landfill as well as optimising recycling options.
  • Other operational aspects.

Become a Member

Our purpose is to connect businesses that sell
glass-packaged consumer goods with those that collect
and recycle glass. This enables glass to be returned to
the furnace or made into alternative products, with the
aim of zero container glass to landfill.

The Circular Story of Glass

If you want to find out how glass bottle and jar recycling works in New Zealand, and only have 2 minutes spare, then this video – showing the journey of glass from your house, to the recycling plant and back to you – is what you need to watch.

Tauranga City Council glass recycling service

A $165,000 grant from the Glass Packaging Forum – the Forum’s biggest to date – help Tauranga City Council roll out its first rates-funded, kerbside recycling service for glass bottles and jars.

Whangaparaoa Community Recycling Centre

A grant from the Glass Packaging Forum enabled the Whangaparaoa Community Recycling Centre to buy a solar-powered wheelie bin lifter. The lifter has greatly improved the efficiency of their glass handling system, making the work of loading glass from bins into a container quicker, easier and safer.

Tauranga Bridge Marina

A grant from the Glass Packaging Forum has helped the Tauranga Bridge Marina install bottle banks to recycle glass at the marina. The bottle banks, which are for marina members and staff, will divert over 100 tonnes of bottles and jars from landfill each year to be recycled at New Zealand’s only glass bottle and jar manufacturer, O-I NZ in Auckland.

Global Action Plan Oceania

Global Action Plan Oceania (GAPO) runs the Devonport Community Recycling Centre and Reuse Shop, with a GPF grant helping improve glass recycling and transport at the centre. It has also meant GAPO can extend its glass collection system to local businesses, including cafes.

Taupo District Council grant

A grant from the Forum has helped the Taupo District Council upgrade the Kinloch Transfer Station in order to better handle the increased volume of glass from a growing population and visitor base. As a result the volume of colour-sorted glass for recycling is set to rise from 60 to 100 tonnes a year.

A master class in glass (RE: News)

RE: News spent a day at O-I New Zealand checking out how glass bottles are made and the importance of recycled glass in the process.

Fire and Sand – How Glass Is Made

O-I New Zealand is the country’s only manufacturer of glass bottles and jars. This video gives a fascinating insight into how glass collected for recycling goes back into the furnace and comes out again as new containers.

Tauranga’s kerbside glass collection

Tauranga City Council rolled out its new rates-funded kerbside glass recycling collection at the beginning of October, 2018. This video gave residents a really good idea of what to expect and what to do to ensure their glass got collected and recycled.