Back to Top

Industry Announcements


Plastics Recycling Update highlights the latest announcements from industry companies and organizations. For information on submitting press releases or contributing op-eds to us, review our FAQ page.

Plastics Recycling Industry Announcements

January 2021

The American Chemistry Council (ACC) announced that INEOS Styrolution America has joined the organization’s Plastics Division.

Global Fiberglass Solutions published an update discussing its business activities over the past year and announcing plans for 2021.

The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI) is accepting nominations for its 2021 Design for Recycling Award.

The National Science Foundation awarded a $2 million grant to the University at Buffalo in New York to develop a robotic scrap plastics sorting system and to research chemical recycling methods. 

Tomra, Borealis and Zimmerman launched a plastics recycling demonstration plant in Lahnstein, Germany.

The Alliance to End Plastic Waste announced five new members have joined the organization. They are Aspen Technology, Enterprise Products Partners, Greiner Packaging, Myers Industries and Tricon Energy.

Market research firm ICIS published a survey that found a lack of PET collection infrastructure is hampering the European Union’s goal to hit 90% collection by 2030.

Finnish oil refining and marketing company Neste invested in Alterra, a chemical recycling company that operates a processing plant in Akron, Ohio.

December 2020

Cleanfarms launched a pilot project in Saskatchewan to collect plastic baler twine for recycling. 

Erema reported on its 2020 activities, describing far higher PET recycling equipment sales compared with previous years. An Erema subsidiary also formed a partnership with Spanish company Cadel Deinking.

Fishing gear recycling firm Net Your Problem collected 12,000 pounds of nylon gill nets in California over the past few months through a collaborative program.

Bottled water producer Perfect Hydration will convert its 1-liter, 1.5-liter and 1-gallon bottles to 100% post-consumer PET in the first quarter of 2021.

Schupan & Sons announced that Johnson Go has joined the company as vice president of supply chain in Schupan’s Materials Trading division.

U.S.-based compounder Star Plastics and LATI, a European compounder of engineering thermoplastics, announced a partnership to expand their product availability internationally.

TechniSoil Industrial announced that its Neo recycled plastic asphalt has been applied on a street in Los Angeles. Earlier this year, the state transportation department used the company’s asphalt binder, which contains recycled PET, to repave a section of highway. 

The Unify Nations in Trash Elimination (UNITE) for our Oceans Act was introduced in the U.S. Senate. The bill establishes a $300 million fund for projects that reduce marine debris and plastic pollution.

The Alliance to End Plastic Waste and IBM introduced a data platform to track plastic waste in the environment around the globe.

Equipment manufacturer AMUT will supply a PET bottle recycling plant in Australia.

Closed Loop Partners published a report highlighting opportunities and challenges with the plastics industry’s move toward bio-based plastics, biopolymers, compostable products and more.

LyondellBasell and SUEZ will jointly acquire Belgium-based TIVACO, a plastics recycling company that will become part of the Quality Circular Polymers joint venture.

Oceana released a report exploring Amazon’s plastic packaging and criticizing the company for making various recyclability claims.

Plastics Recycling Europe announced the winners of its 2020 Plastics Recycling Awards Europe.

Reloop announced an update to its Global Deposit Book, which includes statistics on container deposit systems around the world.

Research and consulting firm Resource Recycling Systems (RRS) published a report analyzing the use of food-grade RPET and recycled HDPE in water bottles in the U.S., on behalf of the International Bottled Water Association. RRS also completed a study on behalf of the Foodservice Packaging Institute, examining recovery of PET thermoforms in the U.S.

Additives company Struktol received a silver rating from the EcoVadis Corporate Social Responsibility rating assessment.

Agilyx announced Mark Barranco as the company’s senior vice president of engineering and execution. Barranco will focus on implementing chemical recycling technology around the world.

Break Free From Plastic published its annual “brand audit,” tallying which companies’ products most frequently end up as litter.

Eastman released its annual sustainability report and announced a goal to process more than 500 million pounds of scrap plastic per year using chemical recycling technologies by 2030.

Extruder manufacturer ENTEK named Kimberly Medford as its new president.

The Foam Recycling Coalition awarded a $50,000 grant to St. Lucie County, Fla., expanding polystyrene foam recycling access for local residents.

Keurig Dr Pepper announced that all of the PP K-Cup pods it produces are now technically recyclable.

U.K. manufacturer P. Wilkinson Containers began producing industrial plastic packaging made from post-consumer HDPE.

Procter & Gamble will begin the switch to recyclable HDPE tubes for its Crest, Blend-a-med and Oral-B toothpaste products in January 2021.

Republic Services published a report covering its plastic collection and recycling operations. The report was spurred by pressure from investors.

Zimmer America Recycling Solutions and STF Group completed a virtual commissioning process of a PET bottle washing and recycling plant in Haiti, because of COVID-19 restrictions.

Aquafil Group, a carpet producer and reclaimer, will acquire Planet Recycling, which collects carpet in Arizona and California. 

Consulting and research firm IHS Markit will merge with S&P Global in a $44 billion deal, which the Washington Post described as the biggest corporate deal of 2020.

Keurig Dr Pepper Canada launched the K-Mini and K-Mini Plus, coffee makers made from 20% and 30% PCR, respectively.

Packaging producer and PET reclaimer Klöckner Pentaplast announced expansions in Beaver, W.Va. and Rural Retreat, Va.

Environmental advocacy group Oceana released a report detailing the harmful impact ocean plastic pollution is having on marine life. The American Chemistry Council issued a statement in response.

Chemical recycling firm Pyrowave announced a joint development agreement with the Michelin group to advance Pyrowave’s technology.

Rachel Wagoner was appointed director of the California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle). Former director Scott Smithline left the position at the end of 2019.

German recycling equipment company Sesotec appointed Joachim Schulz as the company’s CEO.

Bag brand Solo New York announced that its Re:cycled Collection line of bags is now made with ocean-bound plastic.

Star Plastics received a Corporate Responsibility Leader Award from Philanthropy West Virginia.

November 2020

Decking company AZEK started a PVC recycling program.

Bausch + Lomb reported that nearly 27 million contact lenses totaling 162,000 pounds have been recycled through the company’s four-year-old program with TerraCycle.

Dow announced the winners of its 2020 Packaging Innovation Awards.

Eastman announced that its Tritan Renew chemically recycled plastic will be used in a line of protective products for iPhone 12s.

Keep Texas Beautiful and Ozarka brand bottled water launched an initiative to increase recycling in the coastal Texas communities of Bay City, Texas City and Palacios.

Machinex held a virtual open house to mark its 50th anniversary in business.

Market research firm S&P Global Platts launched a daily spot price assessment for food-grade RPET pellets in Los Angeles. The company earlier this year started tracking RPET flake prices.

Trex and Albertsons announced they have recycled over 54,000 pounds of bulk medication dispensing bottles, a recent initiative that adds to their longtime recovered film supply partnership.

The European Court of Auditors issued a report highlighting a “significant risk” of the European Union not meeting its plastic packaging recycling targets for 2025 and 2030.

GreenBlue and NSF International opened the public comment period for their Recycled Material Standard, which is scheduled for publication in 2021.

The Indiana Department of Environmental Management issued a number of grants, including $150,000 for a materials recovery facility (MRF) to purchase robotic sortation equipment targeting PP.

British Columbia-based Merlin Plastics joined the Polypropylene Recycling Coalition, an initiative put on by The Recycling Partnership to boost recovery of PP.

Novolex released new Eco Blend Max trash can liners made with PCR.

PureCycle Technologies selected Koch Modular Process Systems to construct the company’s Phase 2 commercial PP purification and recycling facility in Ironton, Ohio. 

Ring Container engaged a consulting firm to study how the company’s SmartCAN PET canister flows through an advanced materials recovery facility (MRF) in Phoenix.

Packaging producer TC Transcontinental released a shrink film made with 30% PCR.

Agilyx Corporation and Lucite International will pursue a commercial-scale trial for the recycling of PMMA, commonly known as acrylic, at Agilyx’s Tigard, Ore. facility.

During its virtual meeting last week, the Association of Plastic Recyclers (APR) announced a record number of packaging innovations have received APR Critical Guidance Recognition (CGR), which acknowledges they are compatible with current recycling processes. 

Stewardship group Cleanfarms added six collection sites to its agricultural grain bag and used twine recycling program in Alberta. 

The Every Bottle Back initiative, a project managed by beverage industry stakeholders, marked one year since its launch.

The Northeast Recycling Council (NERC) announced  the winners of its 2020 Environmental Sustainability Leadership Awards.

Reclaimer and manufacturer Revolution bought Polar Plastics, a St. Paul, Minn.-based polyethylene products manufacturer. 

A $2 million wash line provided by the STG Group of Germany and funded by HP has come on-line in Haiti.

October 2020

Plastic packaging producer ALPLA Group unveiled what it calls the world’s first portfolio of carbon-neutral RPET offerings.  

The Ellen MacArthur Foundation, World Wide Fund for Nature and other partners published The Business Case for a UN Treaty on Plastic Pollution.

Indorama joined the World Economic Forum’s Global Plastic Action Partnership, a group focused on reducing plastic pollution.

Machinex will hold a virtual open house to celebrate 50 years in business.

Novolex will increase its capacity to recycle plastic bags and other film products collected through retail drop-off programs.

PureCycle Technologies completed $250 million in bond financing that will go toward construction of its first PP recycling facility in Ironton, Ohio.

Stena Recycling and Electrolux developed a vacuum cleaner made from 100% recycled and reused materials, including plastics.

Styrenics Circular Solutions (SCS), an initiative aiming to advance styrenic polymer recycling, announced its demonstration that polystyrene can be mechanically recycled to meet food contact standards.

The U.S. Department of Energy announced more than $27 million for 12 projects that will help develop chemical recycling technologies and new plastic products that are designed to be recyclable.

Zero Waste Europe and 44 non-governmental organizations sent a letter to the European Commission seeking clarification on the role of chemical recycling in circular economy goals.

Spanish plastics technology institute AIMPLAS wrote a white paper on mechanical recycling strategies to boost the quality of recycled plastics for use in demanding applications.

Beauty products brand Innersense Organic Beauty will transition its packaging to using 100% PCR. 

The European recyclability evaluation platform RecyClass determined that Milliken’s Millad NX 8000 additive is fully compatible with PP recycling processes in Europe.  

The South Carolina Department of Commerce and South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) launched an online recycling markets directory.

Tomra Sorting Recycling announced sensor-based sorting solutions for polyolefin flakes. 

Troy University received a $3.5 million grant from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) to fund research into recycling personal protective equipment (PPE).

The Body Shop, a British beauty company, is sourcing scrap plastic from the informal collection sector in Bangalore, India as part of the company’s Community Fair Trade program.

Water bottle producer Buoy announced a bottle made from 100% recycled oceanbound plastic. 

Eastman released a fiber material made in part from chemically recycled plastic processed with the company’s carbon renewal technology

PreZero issued a call for post-consumer LDPE and LLDPE film for the company’s recycling facility in Jurupa Valley, Calif.

SABIC will supply chemically recycled PP to Avoury, which will use the material as feedstock to produce tea capsules, and to Fibertex Personal Care for use in nonwoven hygiene products. 

The Save Our Seas Act 2.0 passed the U.S. Congress on Oct. 1. The legislation endeavors to strengthen the U.S. government’s response to marine plastic pollution.

Carpet producer and recycler Shaw Industries promoted Kellie Ballew to vice president of global sustainability.

Equipment supplier SSI Shredding Systems updated its line of PRI-MAX primary reducer shredders.

September 2020

Amcor developed a recyclable flexible retort pouch, which can be used in applications requiring high-barrier, high-heat resistant packaging., a Home Depot company, released a line of window shades made from recycled plastic.

Nonprofit organization Clean Ocean Access announced a boat shrink wrap recycling initiative in partnership with TerraCycle.

Closed Loop Partners released a report titled “The Circular Shift: Four Key Drivers of Circularity in North America.”

Toyo Ink Europe Specialty Chemicals developed Lioplax black plastic masterbatch for near-infrared sorting in materials recovery applications.

Equipment supplier Vecoplan expanded its plastics sales team, adding a western regional sales manager.

Consulting and research firm NexantECA will hold a webinar on Sept. 29 about a recently released report covering the use of thermolysis to recycle mixed-plastic streams.

Packaging and recycling firm ALPLA Group will build an HDPE recycling plant in Toluca, Mexico, capable of processing 33 million pounds per year.

Berry Global signed an agreement to supply The AZEK Company with post-industrial scrap plastic, which will be used to produce composite decking and other building materials.

Datepac began using 100% green post-consumer RPET in certain products. The RPET is supplied by PinnPack, a subsidiary of PET reclaimer CarbonLite.

The Foam Recycling Coalition provided a $46,500 grant for Pennsylvania-based Westmoreland Cleanways and Recycling to add a foam densifier at its drop-off recycling facility.

The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI) submitted testimony in support of New Jersey legislation that encourages the use of recycled material in plastic products.

PP film producer IRPLAST will source chemically recycled PP from SABIC.

Unilever brand Love Beauty and Planet, which uses 100% post-consumer resin in its packaging, published a sustainability report with recycled plastic usage figures.

AMUT Group will supply equipment for a post-consumer PET and HDPE bottle sorting and processing plant in Southeast Asia.

The city of Broken Arrow, Okla. will begin distributing single-stream recycling carts this month and plans to launch collection service in October.

Nonprofit organization Enactus launched a challenge for university and college students to “rethink plastic use, recycling and disposal.”

Japan Environment PLANning (JEPLAN), IFP Energies nouvelles (IFPEN) and Axens, companies involved in chemical recycling, research and conversion technologies, respectively, will collaborate on a PET monomer recycling pilot plant.

Loop Industries and Suez announced plans to build an “Infinite Loop” PET chemical recycling facility in Europe.

LyondellBasell announced the start-up of a pilot “molecular recycling” facility in Ferrara, Italy.

The National Waste & Recycling Association (NWRA) announced the recipients of its 2020 awards.

Star Plastics, with partner site Star Advance Materials in Shandong, China, received UL Environmental Certification 2809 to produce PCR under ULE requirements.

Turkey, a significant market for U.S. scrap plastic exports, published a policy to restrict recovered plastic and paper imports.

Earthwise Bag Co. released a bag made from 90% recycled oceanbound plastic supplied by OceanCycle, which sources and certifies collected marine resin.

The European Bands Association (AIM) launched HolyGrail 2.0, a project to add digital watermarks on packaging to aid in the sorting process.

PreZero announced that its PCR CoreFilm product line has received Underwriter Laboratories (UL) certification as containing 100% recycled plastic.

The Tampa, Fla. City Council unanimously voted to ban the distribution of expanded polystyrene cups, plates and other foodservice items on public property.

Equipment supplier Tomra published an ebook detailing the benefits of using cloud-based data

storage and other connectivity tools in conjunction with optical sorting equipment.

Chemical recycling firm Agilyx announced additions to its board of directors.

The Alliance to End Plastic Waste published a report detailing its progress in the 18 months since the group was founded.

Film packaging producer Inteplast Engineered Films joined the Sustainable Packaging Coalition (SPC).

Equipment supplier Machinex reported a record year for baler sales in the U.S. and Canada, with the equipment supplier selling 78 balers in the last 12 months.

Packaging manufacturer Novolex published its latest sustainability report, which states that the company used 4% PCR in 2019, an increase over the prior year.

Consumer goods company Seventh Generation launched a product line called Zero Plastic Homecare.

August 2020

The Alliance to End Plastic Waste will accept proposals for plastic waste reduction infrastructure projects through Dec. 31, 2020.

The Association of Plastic Recyclers (APR) published critical guidance and test documents for PE film. Additionally, APR endorsed GreenCircle Certified as a certifier for APR’s PCR certification program.

Keurig Dr Pepper published its 2019 corporate responsibility report, which states that 20% of the company’s packaging is made with PCR and 87% of its packaging is recyclable.

Klöckner Pentaplast, a manufacturer of recycled-content products and high-barrier protective packaging, announced it will expand its post-consumer recycled PET extrusion capacity by 19,300 short tons.

PreZero US, which is developing mixed rigids and film recycling facilities, announced it is actively sourcing plastics Nos. 2-7 for mechanical recycling at its in-progress U.S. plants. 

Recyclass launched its Recycled Plastics Traceability Certification. 

The Sustainable Packaging Coalition (SPC) announced that its Recycled Material Standard has moved from development into pilot testing.

The American Chemistry Council (ACC) announced Joshua Baca as the association’s next vice president of its plastics division. Baca currently serves as senior vice president for public affairs at the American Beverage Association (ABA).

Asahi Beverages, Cleanaway Waste Management and Pact Group Holdings announced they are developing a PET recycling plant in Albury, Australia.

The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI) adopted a position in support of efforts to increase the use of recycled plastic in certain applications.

Organizers say they’ve gathered enough signatures to qualify the Plastics Free California Initiative, which puts a fee on plastic packaging to fund recycling efforts, for the November 2022 general election ballot. 

RPET producer PolyQuest announced Tod Durst has been appointed as company president.

SABIC announced that chemically recycled PP produced using the company’s Trucircle initiative is being used in Magnum ice cream tubs.

Trex published its 2019 environmental, social and governance report, which notes the company used more than 850 million pounds of PE film and reclaimed wood fibers in its products last year.

The Association of Plastic Recyclers (APR) announced growth in its PCR Certification Program, which now includes as members Avangard Innovative, EFS-Plastics, Envision Plastics, Merlin Plastics, Revolution and Trigon Plastics.

BASF announced that its recyChain pilot program, which uses blockchain technology to boost plastics recycling efforts, has drawn a handful of major companies as partners.

The Global Plastics Alliance, a collaborative group of plastics industry associations, released a progress report showing 395 marine litter prevention projects were planned, underway or completed as of early 2020.

Green Tree Plastics, which uses 100% recycled plastic to make furniture, had a fire at its Evansville, Ind. processing facility.

How2Recycle published a report discussing the future of store drop-off recycling options.

Microsoft announced a number of recycling goals, including a plan to use 100% recyclable packaging in countries that are part of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

Sealed Air invested in and signed an agreement to collaborate with chemical recycling firm Plastic Energy Global.

The American Beverage Association (ABA) will invest in Broken Arrow, Okla. through the Every Bottle Back initiative that targets collection and processing of plastic bottles.

Indorama announced it will acquire Polish PET recycling company IMP Polowat.

The Recycling Partnership announced 15 new representatives were elected to its board of directors.