InFORMed - December 2021

The last 18 months have made me realise more than ever just how important supplier relationships are, especially when things start to get very challenging.  KPL has always prided itself on its quality of service and reliability and we couldn’t do this without our great suppliers and the relationships that we have built with them. 

The success of these relationships is usually down to the supplier sharing the same values and ethics as KPL, not just when it comes to how they look at service but how they also run their businesses.   

Like many companies, COVID-19 has presented us with many challenges, and I’m very pleased to say that not one of our key suppliers has let us down, and we continue to build on those strong relationships.  

One supplier in particular who has always been there to help KPL, especially with the recent  pressures on transport, is D&TJ Beal Haulage Contractors. KPL has been working with Darren and his team for over 30 years.

They started their business around the same time as KPL in 1990 on the same industrial estate and we have been neighbours ever since. This close relationship, from both a work and geographical point of view, has played a hugely significant role in supporting the service that KPL offers its customers.  


Back in 2019, we extended the toolroom and revamped our design and pattern making facility. With this extension, we also invested in new machinery to allow us to increase efficiencies and offer our customers more support with NPD. While extending the toolroom, we also created space for additional machinery investments, which has recently included another CNC machining centre from YMT. It’s amazing after all the business has gone through during the height of the pandemic last year, that we now find ourselves once again in a position to carry on with our investment plans for our toolroom, design and development facilities. 

We’ve seen an amazing increase in NPD and new tooling since spring this year and we now all hope that we can put COVID-19 behind us and continue on this much more exciting and fulfilling path as we take the business forward again.

Market Update

Pressure on all global commodities and supply chains are still immense as the world finds its feet  again after the pandemic. RPET is still in high demand, which is not just due to the increase in products being made with higher recycled content. There is also a significant pull from Europe to South/Latin America, from a European market that is already sold out because companies are not importing Asian material due to shipping issues and costs.    

It’s all a bit of a perfect storm for the European market at the moment. Virgin supply is going extremely tight, on top of the RPET market being tight and going tighter. These factors don’t help pricing, so unfortunately, we can expect to probably see more hikes this side of Christmas and early in the New Year. 

As usual KPL is well equipped with its supply chain to make sure our customers continue to enjoy a seamless service. 

Plastic Tax

In April 2022 HMRC will commence the Plastic Packaging Tax, a £200 per tonne charge against products with less than 30% recycled content.

This will apply to certain ranges of product that are predominantly plastic by weight.

Whilst there are still a number of variables it is clear that supply chains will be required to demonstrate a clearer understanding of product composition and the recycled content of each product. 

Key points:

  • The tax is currently at £200 per tonne on products with less than 30% recycled content; formed from either post-consumer waste or pre-consumer waste from a reprocessing facility.  
  • The tax is only payable on ‘plastic components. A plastic component is a product that is designed to be suitable for use in the containment, protection, handling, delivery or presentation of goods at any stage in the supply chain of the goods, from the producer of the goods to the user or consumer. 
  • The tax will be payable on the total product weight of a single unit, on products where plastic is the largest material component by weight.

The good news is the under the current plastic tax parameters all of KPL’s products produced in RPET, PP and HIPS are exempt from the tax. However, that may change and we will keep all our customers up to date if there are any changes to the tax parameters over the coming months.


Despite the great leader of our country saying “recycling doesn’t work”, we happen to disagree with him. KPL has been using recycled content in our products for years, this being made possible by working closely and creating closed loops with our key suppliers. The processing of recyclable materials is steadily improving in local communities and across the country, which is great news! KPL recently met with Somerset Council to understand more about what’s happening in our local community, now and in the future, and the news was very positive. Somerset Council is rolling out their Recycle More scheme, which allows residents to put more items of household and packaging waste into their recycling bins. This now includes; plastic bottles, pots, tubs, lids and trays.

With plastic still being one of the best and most durable materials available to support the worlds consumer demands, I do believe that we need to start embracing the reasons why - it’s used and how we can deal with the waste better, rather than just vilifying it as a material. Plastic is a much-needed material and in most cases does its job really well.  

With the current pressures on plastic and how it will get recycled, we believe the best way forward will be to offer products in the most easily recycled materials possible. Right now, this would be RPET when it comes to rigid containers.  The government is going to aid this by applying more pressure when it introduces its EPR scheme (Extended Producer Responsibility) in 2023/24. 

Employee of the Month

We are very lucky to have such a great workforce at KPL, their commitment to our business is such a key factor to our success and its always difficult to select individuals from the teams they work in. However, it is always nice to recognise great work and achievements when they happen and it’s a great pleasure to highlight the following people’s achievements over the last 3 months in our newsletter.  


Matt Burton was our August Employee of the Month for supporting the business with overtime and for his recent commitment in adapting to and embracing the new technology and equipment we are investing in.  Matt joined KPL as an apprentice back in 2003 and he’s worked in our toolroom and factory as an engineer. Matt’s engineering skills don’t just stop with KPL, at the weekend you could well find Matt covered in oil and grease tinkering with steam trains down at the local station.

Matt is also one of Yeovil Town's most devout supporters and will often travel all over the country to see them play. 


Paul Goodland was our September Employee of the Month. Paul took over running the warehouse this year and has really embraced the role. He brings a creative and organised approach to this very important part of KPL and has been pivotal in making sure our customers can always get what they want when they need it, especially over the rather crazy recent months. Out of work, Paul enjoys a busy family life with his wife and three children.

He also supports our local community as an on-call firefighter, for which KPL are incredibly proud to support him.  Paul has also recently passed his LGV driver training for the Fire Service.  


Ethan Morgan was our October Employee of the Month. Ethan only joined KPL in August on our apprenticeship scheme, so it was amazing to hear him being put forward for employee of the month when he’s only been with KPL for 3 months. However, during this time he has embraced every challenge that we have given him, and his willingness to listen, learn, and when needed, use initiative with a can-do approach, has really impressed everyone at KPL. 

Outside of work, Ethan enjoys working on cars and fixing things. Well done Ethan, this is a great start to your career with KPL.

Christmas 2021

Our offices, factory, and warehouse will close at 4pm on Thursday 23rd December and reopen on Tuesday 4th January 2022. Our last day for delivery before the Christmas break will be Thursday 23rd December and deliveries will resume from Wednesday 5th of January 2022. 

We'd also like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a Happy Christmas and a healthy and Happy New Year. 

This newsletter is dedicated to Bob Brain, who very sadly passed away on the 19th November 2021. Bob had worked at KPL for nearly 30 years and we will all miss his charming ways.  


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