About product stewardship in New Zealand

We all need to help reduce the impacts of manufactured products on our environment. When a producer, brand owner, importer, retailer or consumer accepts responsibility for reducing a product’s environmental impact, we call this product stewardship.

Product stewardship helps us transition from a linear to a circular economy

linear circular economy
The one-directional (linear) life cycle of a product from natural resources is Take-Make-Dispose-Waste. Products can have technical and biological materials mixed up. Energy is from finite sources. The circular (continuous) economy includes the biological materials Make-Consume-Enrich cycle and the technical material Make-use-return cycle. Energy is from renewable sources.

Taking responsibility for the products we use

Taking responsibility can range from:

  • responsible disposal or recycling of a product
  • designing a product which can be broken down into recyclable or reusable components.

Government accreditation

Many New Zealand organisations and individuals participate in one or more product stewardship schemes that are Government accredited.

Collectively, these schemes have diverted more than 1.3 million tonnes of waste from landfill.

Find out more

For further information on the Ministry’s product stewardship work programme email PSAccreditation@mfe.govt.nz.

For further information on circular economy see the Circular economy accelerator website and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation website.