It is our understanding that the addition of “digestate” to the list of materials exempted from the obligation of REACH Registration (Annex V) has finally been approved (Member States CARACAL Committee 17th May 2019), and the Regulation formalising this is expected to be published in July 2019. The modification of REACH (the European Chemicals Regulation) adds simply the word “digestate” to the list of materials exempted from registration (after compost and biogas, which were already specified). However, the Regulation making this modification gives more details, defining digestate as “a residual semisolid or liquid material that has been sanitised and stabilised by a biological treatment process, of which the last step is an anaerobic digestion step, and where the inputs used in that process are biodegradable materials originating only from non-hazardous source segregated materials, such as food waste, manure and energy crops”. The Regulation indicates that no REACH registrations for digestate have been submitted, but that this modification will remove uncertainties for producers and users of digestate and for enforcement authorities. This exemption of digestate in REACH Annex V was requested from the European Commission by the European Biogas Association and the European Sustainable Phosphorus Platform (ESPP) in 2014.
Draft Regulation adding ‘digestate’ to the REACH Annex V exemptions from registration: http://ec.europa.eu/growth/tools-databases/tbt/en/search/?tbtaction=search.detail&Country_ID=EU&num=630