Operation Clean Sweep (OCS)

Pellet loss is the second largest source of primary microplastics! The plastics industry and its value chain have a direct impact on granulate loss!

The value chain for acting together via Operation Clean Sweep®

In order to live up to its responsibility, Plastics Europe, together with numerous associations of plastics processors, has started to promote OCS in Europe since 2014, with the aim of zero pellet/powder/flake loss ! In 2021, EuPC – European Plastic Converters , the association of European plastics converters, also joined the OCS, covering the entire European territory together with its member associations.

Rules and principles of the system

In 2020, EuPC, the association of European plastics processors, and Plastics Europe, the association of plastics manufacturers in Europe, committed to jointly developing an OCS certification system by 2022, i.e. the external verification of companies’ obligation to comply with OCS requirements .

The OCS core requirements

The OCS certification system contains a number of requirements that must be met in order to become OCS certified.

Some factors to consider when getting a certification:

  1. Improvement of release prevention and control facilities
  2. Creation of processes to reduce the loss of industrial plastic material to zero
  3. Train staff and take responsibility for preventing, containing, cleaning up and disposing of spills
  4. Periodic review of performance
  5. Comply with all applicable state and local regulations for containment of industrial plastics
  6. Encouraging partners (contractors, transporters, dealers, etc.) to share the same goals.

The scope

The OCS certification scheme aims to control and document compliance by companies throughout the plastics supply chain with the requirements to prevent the loss of plastic pellets, powders and flakes to the environment.

The basic OCS requirements are made up of the OCS core requirements and the OCS-specific requirements:

OCS Basic Requirements

These are procedures, assessment steps, management systems, training requirements and related key performance indicators (KPIs) that are common to all parts of the value chain. The KPIs can be used to quantify the implementation of measures to avoid pellet/powder losses.

OCS-specific requirements

Each part of the value chain has its own specific OCS Europe certification module. It is assumed that measures and indicators can be module-specific. The following modules are currently planned:

▪ Module 1: OCS Europe Production for plastic manufacturers and integrated compounders;

▪ Module 2: OCS Europe Master batching compounding and converting;

▪ Module 3: OCS Europe Transport and Logistics for companies that are not SQAS-assessed;

▪ OCS Europe Transport and Logistics for SQAS assessed companies.


Once a company has successfully passed the audit and received the OCS certificate through ACT/AJA, the name of the OCS certified company and the location for which the certification was granted will be published in the public OCS register (OCS website) The logistics providers and distributors that meet the basic OCS requirements are also included in the register (companies assessed by SQAS must meet the minimum OCS requirements to be included in the public OCS register).

Many advantages all round with a certification according to the OCS Guideline

Promotion of environmental protection

Optimization of processes, cost savings

Proof of Reliability

Reduction of losses and environmental damage

Greater legal certainty

High reputation