Cross-industry consortium formed to tackle PET plastic waste

Six major companies have joined forces to create a new cross-industry consortium to tackle polyethylene terephthalate (PET) plastic waste.

Members of the consortium comprise packaging and recycling specialist ALPLA, consumer goods producers Britvic, Danone and Unilever, waste management and recycling company REMONDIS and energy and petrochemicals producer BP.

The consortium member companies will leverage their capabilities and experience to address the issue. They will build a business model to help accelerate the commercial use BP Infinia’s enhanced recycling technology to contribute to the development of a global circular economy for plastics.

ALPLA head of recycling Georg Lässer said: “ALPLA is delighted to join this cross-functional project with partners from the entire value chain. It completes our intense activities besides mechanical recycling and focuses on post-industrial PET waste, difficult to recycle PET packaging and PET thermoform trays.

“With BP in the lead, we have a very strong and highly experienced partner that contributes with knowledge about virgin polyester production.”

PET is a lightweight, durable and versatile material used in rigid packaging of food and drinks products, personal care and homecare bottles.

According to Ellen MacArthur Foundation: The New Plastics Economy, Napcor, it lists among the most collected and recycled types of plastic.

BP Infinia is capable of transforming opaque and difficult-to-recycle PET plastic waste into recycled feedstocks to manufacture high-quality PET plastic packaging.

Earlier this year, BP invested $25m to construct a pilot plant in the US to prove the technology before full-scale commercialisation.

BP Petrochemicals chief operating officer Rita Griffin said: “BP is experienced in developing and scaling up technology and we’ll do this again with our innovative BP Infinia process.

“But we know we cannot create circularity on our own. That’s why we are thrilled to be working together with industry leaders to develop and prove a practical business model that can hopefully contribute to making all types of polyester waste infinitely recyclable.”

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