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Environment

ChemCycling: the new recycling?

Packaging and paper group Mondi has collaborated with chemical producer BASF and COROOS to create a food-friendly stand-up pouch derived from chemically recycled plastic.

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Mondi experimented with chemistry to create a recycled plastic product

Plastic waste that is difficult to recycle, such as mixed or contaminated plastics, is converted into a pyrolysis oil through thermochemical processes. This secondary raw material can be used as input in BASF’s production process, which works to replace fossil resources.

Mondi is passionate about packaging being sustainable and says that where possible, paper should be used and plastic when this is useful.

Christopher Gahn, who is responsible for the polyamide business at BASF says: ““BASF is working on advancing the chemical recycling of plastic waste, because this will make it possible to process and reuse plastics that are currently difficult to recycle such as mixed plastics.”

The packaging has not yet been released for the market as technological, regulatory and economic issues still need to be resolved and there are strict European regulations which mean more tests will need to be carried out.

COROOS is partnering in this project because we care about sustainability and are looking into different options to improve our footprint

Mondi believes that plastic is often the best choice for food products because of its barrier properties. These requirements make it difficult to use mechanically recycled plastic due to potential impurities which limit its ability to be used for edible items.

Elke Schroevers, the Marketing Manager at COROOS says: “COROOS is partnering in this project because we care about sustainability and are looking into different options to improve our footprint, e.g. by using packaging from recycled materials, packaging materials being recyclable and/or by being re-usable.”

If you have any comments on this story, or would like to get in touch, please email me at zoe@linkpubishing.co.uk or join the conversation on Twitter.


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