MRC -- Greiner Packaging has successfully manufactured trays using 70% recycled polyethylene terephthalate (r-PET) for the renowned Austrian beverage company, Rauch Fruchtsafte, said Chemanalyst.
This environmentally conscious initiative by Greiner involves the utilization of material sourced from 'yellow bags' to create these innovative and sustainable beverage trays. Throughout the project, the viability of generating r-PET flakes from post-consumer material was demonstrated through a meticulous process involving pre- and post-sorting, followed by shredding and washing.
The intricate process begins with the creation of a PET film, comprising 70% recycled material, from the r-PET flakes. Subsequently, Greiner Assistec, a business unit within the company, employs thermoforming techniques to shape this film into the final r-PET trays. Notably, the r-PET flakes used in this process are derived from input materials beyond PET beverage bottles, encompassing items such as cups, tubs, and trays.
In the realm of sustainable packaging, the predominant practice involves recycling PET bottles to produce r-PET flakes. Greiner, however, highlights the underutilized potential of recycling additional PET packaging from 'yellow bags.' This represents a strategic shift in the recycling paradigm, demonstrating a commitment to explore and maximize the recycling potential of various plastic products beyond traditional bottles.
Peter Fessl, the Director of Greiner Recycling, stressed the company's forward-looking approach, expressing that by expanding a year ago, they communicated a clear signal and emphasized their belief in the potential of r-PET for a sustainable future in the packaging industry. At that time, their explicit objective was to divert recycling streams away from virgin PET bottles. He mentioned that the project with Rauch Fruchtsafte represents just one step on this path, with many more to follow. This statement indicates Greiner's commitment to progressing recycling practices and lessening reliance on virgin PET materials.
Rauch Fruchtsafte, as part of its ongoing sustainability efforts, is already incorporating bottles made from 100% r-PET in its operations. Hanno Mandl, the Purchasing Manager at Rauch, emphasized the importance of ensuring a robust supply of high-quality r-PET from bottle recycling for the production of new r-PET bottles. Mandl also highlighted the significance of exploring alternative forms of packaging for the manufacturing of various products, aligning with the company's commitment to environmental responsibility.
This collaborative effort between Greiner Packaging and Rauch Fruchtsafte exemplifies a holistic approach to sustainability in the packaging industry. By actively exploring and implementing innovative recycling practices, these companies are contributing to the broader goal of reducing the environmental impact of plastic packaging. The use of r-PET in trays not only showcases the versatility of recycled materials but also emphasizes the importance of diversifying recycling sources beyond conventional PET bottles. As consumer and industry demands for sustainable practices continue to grow, initiatives like these set a positive precedent for the future of packaging, promoting circular economy principles and responsible resource management.
We remind, Croatian PET recycling company, Rekis, a result of a merger between the Austrian drinks firm Steinrieser and the Austro-Croatian trading company KIS pica involved in beverage production, has recently made a significant undisclosed investment in the establishment of a state-of-the-art PET recycling plant located in the Donja Dubrava region of Croatia. This advanced facility is capable of producing an impressive 18,000 tons per year of high-quality rPET (recycled PET) pellets derived from post-consumer plastic bottles.