SUPD Paper Cup Labelling – All You Need to Know

New packaging labelling laws are coming into effect across Europe to combat marine litter levels.

The Single Use Plastic Directive (SUPD) requires standard ‘Plastic in Product’ markings for beverage cups, regardless of plastic content levels. (See image above for example of placement.)

And, as of April 2021, Cup Print have an important update for operators selling in the Republic of Ireland. (See below for Northern Ireland).

As Irish and English are the official languages of The State, both languages are required to be displayed. The official texts to be displayed (PLAISTEACH SA TÁIRGE and PLASTIC IN PRODUCT) are shown below.

Image of compulsory label marking for EU SUPD Irish-language turtle artwork for paper beverage cups

Here’s a summary of what you need to know:

  • Cups delivered to customers before July 3rd 2021 CAN be sold in that European Member State until July 4th 2022 without the label
  • Cups that are to be delivered to and sold (‘Placed on the market’) in another European Member State after July 3rd 2021 must have the label.
  • Directive applies to all types of disposable cups – even so-called ‘plastic-free‘ cups (Anyone offering such products as a ‘Solution’ to avoid labelling is giving misleading information)
  • The marking must contain the official language(s) of the country the cup is used in. You can have multiple languages
  • Cup Print are ready to add the required logos on your custom cup design according to the regulations
  • No charges will be made for adjusting plates of existing designs


Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland is still a trading zone within the European Union and the SUPD labelling requirement came into effect on January 1st 2022. Cups sold in Northern Ireland must have the label in English. However, if selling cross-border, the dual-language Republic of Ireland labelling would suffice as it does contain English-language markings.

Cup Print continues to offer their short-run, fast turnaround customised cup printing service, including two sustainable solutions in line with AA-rated BRCGS High Hygiene & Product Quality Standards and PEFC Forestry Accreditation.

The Cup Print Alternative Coatings Range offers a certified-as-recyclable cup using EarthCoating® mineralised liner – certified by both PTS and Institute cyclos-HTP in conjunction with the European Green Dot Scheme – plus a Compostable Cup Range.