Vitacore Industries is among a handful of companies that will receive money from the Canadian government to scale up their technology. | Faizzamal/Shutterstock

Vitacore Industries, a personal protective equipment manufacturer, received 4.18 million Canadian dollars (about $3.17 million) to develop a facility to recycle discarded PPE into building materials. 

The grant is part of an award of 20.80 million Canadian dollars (about $15.79 million; figures below in USD) to seven businesses. A press release stated that the money is intended to provide local small- and medium-sized enterprises with access to state-of-the-art technology and expertise. 

Vitacore Industries was awarded about $3.17 million from the Jobs and Growth Fund to scale up its production of masks and respirators and to develop a recycling facility that processes discarded personal protective equipment (PPE) into building construction material.

Vitacore offers take-back services for communities, hospitals and industrial sites. Once the company recovers the PPE, it sterilizes and compacts the material into a mixture of polypropylene and aluminum. The mixture is shredded and separated, then the polypropylene is pelletized and sent primarily to building and construction suppliers for use as concrete reinforcement, weather membranes and exterior sidings. 

Some of the pellets also go into carpeting and structural fabrics, the company’s website noted. 

Money for the grant package comes from three Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada (PacifiCan) programs: the Regional Innovation Ecosystems program, the Business Scale-up and Productivity program, and the Jobs and Growth Fund.

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