The US Postal Service had planned to tighten rules around parcels in “soft packaging” but has scrapped the plans.
The USPS said parcels that are “improperly” packaged in soft materials such as plastic, cloth and padded envelopes lead to an excess of selvage – the overhang of material beyond the contents – and can damage parcels or render them unmachinable.
It also cited added costs of manual processing to both USPS and the customer.
The USPS had published the proposed rule in the Federal Register (87 FR 16700-16702) on March 24, 2022. The rule would have implemented a two-inch maximum of selvage on the length and the width of a parcel prepared in soft packaging. In addition, the USPS was proposing a definition of how to measure parcels prepared in soft packaging to generally determine the length, width, and height of the mailpiece.
Members of the mailing community voiced concerns about the plan in comments.
“In consideration of concerns expressed by members of the mailing community during the proposed rule comment period, the Postal Service has elected to withdraw the proposed rule,” it announced.