From ‚bottle 2 bottle‘ to ‚tray 2 tray‘: New plant ensures recycling of PET trays

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PET-Schalen (Foto: Kroll / Recyclingportal.eu)

Arnhem / Leidschendam, The Netherlands — The Dutch Waste Packaging Fund (Afvalfonds Verpakkingen) has made an agreement with 4PET Recycling to start recycling PET-trays on a large scale from 2018. Until recently the technology for large scale recycling of PET trays was not available.

The plant that 4PET currently has under construction in Duiven will be equipped with this technology and ensures a durable solution for the recycling of plastic trays on an industrial scale. These trays have previously been used to package meat, vegetables, fruit amongst other products. 4PET Recycling is the first recycler worldwide to recycle used PET trays as a separate raw material.

In the Netherlands, PET trays are collected in a mix with household plastic packaging waste. From spring 2018, several waste sorters in the Netherlands will sort and offer PET trays from plastic packaging waste to 4PET Recycling in Duiven. This company is fully committed to the recycling of PET packaging and from mid-2018 will start a process dedicated to the recycling of PET trays. This recycled material will be used for the production of new trays and bowls for meat, vegetables and fruit, flowers and plants, as well as strapping.

About 10 percent of household plastic packaging waste consists of PET trays. With the existing technology, the flow of PET trays was only used as a secondary flow to the recycling of PET bottles as part of the mixed-plastic flow. In both cases, there is an upper limit on the amount of PET trays that could be used without adversely impacting the quality.

„Due to the removal of the PET trays from the mixed-plastic waste flow using this new technology, the quality of this source increases thereby making an important step towards further improvement in high-quality recycling of raw materials“, says Cees de Mol van Otterloo, director of the Waste Packaging Fund. „This recycling of PET trays is a major contributor in the transition to a circular economy.“

Jean-Loup van de Wiele, CEO / CCO of 4PET, added: „As 4PET, we have witnessed the vast growth of the PET tray market for several years. In our view, this is a new opportunity for PET recycling to work alongside the existing worldwide PET bottle market. We are therefore very pleased that we can offer the first worldwide closed-loop recycling solution. For many years we have been ‚Bottle 2 Bottle‘ and now we are “’Tray 2 Tray“‚.

NRK Recycling welcomes the agreement between Waste Packaging Fund and the Leading PET recycler, 4PET Recycling to provide a large scale recycling capability. With their extensive knowledge of the recycling process, a sustainable solution has now been found, and where both collection and recycling are guaranteed this provides a valuable contribution to a Circular economy.

Source: 4PET Recycling