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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

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.

Blinds.com, 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.

July 2020

The Alliance to End Plastic Waste and UN-Habitat announced a partnership aiming to improve waste and resource management strategies in areas with high plastic waste leakage into the environment.

The American Beverage Association selected Kenosha, Wis. as the next region to receive recycling infrastructure funding through the Every Bottle Back initiative.

Home Depot announced it replaced 7.7 million pounds of virgin plastic with recycled plastic in the company’s products and packaging during 2019.

The Pew Charitable Trust published a report identifying actions that could prevent plastic from entering marine environments. The American Chemistry Council responded, supporting some of the report’s findings but recommending against using other materials in place of plastic.

The Plastic Credit Exchange, a nonprofit organization focused on preventing ocean plastic pollution, released updated guidelines for businesses looking to account for and offset their plastic waste.

AMP Robotics was included on the Forbes AI 50, a list of the country’s most promising artificial intelligence companies.

Anchor Packaging, which uses recycled plastic in its thermoform products, acquired thermoform manufacturer Panoramic Inc.

Oceana, an ocean conservation organization, released a survey that found e-commerce customers want Amazon and other online retailers to provide plastic-free packaging choices.

Turtle Plastics, a manufacturer that uses recycled plastic, announced it has become a women-owned small business after shifts in its majority shareholders.

The University of Delaware received $11.65 million in federal grant funds to create the Center for Plastics Innovation, a research center studying chemical recycling.

Standards development organization Verra opened a public comment period seeking feedback on its Plastic Waste Reduction Program, a voluntary market-based approach to increase the value of plastic waste.

Pyrolysis company Agilyx announced that Peter Norris is now the company’s chairman and Tim Stedman will become CEO. Previous CEO Joe Vaillancourt will become president of Cyclyx International, a feedstock management company associated with Agilyx. 

Dow announced the pilot project ReflexNG, which will collect and recycle plastic scrap in Lagos, Nigeria. 

How2Recycle announced the creation of an advisory committee.

Keurig Dr Pepper disclosed that it pledged $10 million to The Recycling Partnership’s Polypropylene Recycling Coalition over the next five years. 

National Recovery Technologies (NRT) launched the NRT ColorPlus with Max-AI, an optical sorter that incorporates artificial intelligence technology.

The Northeast Recycling Council (NERC) and Association of Plastic Recyclers (APR) will host a webinar covering the organizations’ Government Recycling Demand Champion program. 

The Last Beach Cleanup created a new webpage to show California’s in-state capacity for processing recovered plastics.

Zero Waste Europe and the Rethink Plastic Alliance published a policy briefing on legislation related to chemical recycling.

Chemical recycling firm Brightmark completed a pilot collection program for LLDPE boat wrap, which will be used as feedstock for Brightmark’s Ashley, Ind. plastics-to-fuel facility.

PET reclaimer CarbonLite installed new equipment at its Dallas facility to increase processing capacity by 20%.

Packaging producer Cascades and food supplier Vegpro announced that Fresh Attitude salad containers will be made from 100% RPET.

Consumer goods company Henkel issued a $70 million bond that will be allocated to plastic waste reduction projects.

Indorama Ventures released its annual sustainability report, which includes details on the company’s recycling operations.

Nestlé Canada announced an agreement to sell its Canadian Nestlé Pure Life bottled water business to Ice River Springs, a bottled water producer that also runs BMP Recycling, a PET recycling operation.

Polymer services company PolyOne completed its acquisition of chemical firm Clariant and changed its name to Avient.

SC Johnson introduced a bottle made from 100% oceanbound plastic, to be used in the company’s Mr Muscle window and glass cleaner products sold in the U.K. and Ireland.

Luggage company Tumi reported on its recycled material use, noting that the company has used the equivalent of 980,000 plastic bottles.

The U.S. House of Representatives Subcommittee on Environment is hosting a virtual briefing titled “Plastic Production, Pollution and Waste in the Time of Covid-19: The Life-Threatening Impact of Single Use Plastic on Human Health.”

Chemical recycling firm Agilyx launched Cyclyx International, a “feedstock management company” that will help source scrap plastic for chemical and mechanical recycling operations.

The American Chemistry Council (ACC) released a projection showing resin production declining in 2020 and rebounding in 2021.

The Break Free from Plastic Pollution Act was highlighted in the House Democrats’ Congressional Action Plan for a Clean Energy Economy and a Healthy, Resilient, and Just America. 

Packaging firm Eatery Essentials is investing $19 million in a Texas facility that will use recycled PET to produce food packaging. The processing plant is slated to start up in October.

Keep America Beautiful appointed Jacqueline Grace as the organization’s chief development officer. The organization also joined SoulBuffalo’s Ocean Plastics Leadership Network, through which retailers, brands, NGOs and other organizations engage on plastic waste issues.

Plastics Recyclers Europe published guidelines aiming to serve as a quality benchmark for numerous recycled resins.

June 2020

Equipment supplier Erema released a report covering the company’s activities during its 2019-20 fiscal year, which ended on March 31.

The Foundation for Plastic Recycling, a philanthropic arm of the Association of Plastic Recyclers, announced several new board members. The organization also received a $100,000 donation from PepsiCo.

Plastics Recyclers Europe published a study on the state of flexible packaging recycling in Europe.

Packaging producer Ring Container Technologies replaced its standard paper-based composite nut can, which is not accepted in recycling programs, with an all-PET recyclable version.

The Tag and Label Manufacturers Institute (TLMI) Board of Directors announced Linnea Keen will be the next president of the association.

Chemical recycling firm Agilyx began processing PS foodservice ware from a retirement home near the company’s Tigard, Ore. plant. The company also partnered with an EPS egg carton manufacturer to increase post-consumer EPS collection in Washington state.

The Alliance to End Plastic Waste partnered with the United States Agency for International Development to address global ocean plastic pollution.

Diageo North America announced its Seagram’s 7 Crown plastic bottles will be made from 100% RPET.

Pyrolysis startup Encina hired Mylinda Jacobsen as global director of purchasing.

Assets from Canadian film recycler Enviroplast were acquired by flexible packaging producer TC Transcontinental.

Manjushree Technopack Limited launched an initiative titled “Born Again,” which will deliver packaging made from post-consumer PP and HDPE to the fast-moving consumer goods sector.

RecyClass published a recyclability evaluation protocol for PP containers.

The Association of Plastic Recyclers (APR) announced that Liz Bedard, director of APR’s rigid plastics program, has retired.

Analytics firm Clarivate released a report noting that although recyclable and biodegradable products are gaining prominence, this trend remains a very small part of the overall plastics sector.

Advocacy group Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives (GAIA) released a technical analysis concluding chemical recycling is polluting, energy intensive and has a track record of technical failures. In response, plastics industry group American Chemistry Council issued a statement citing other studies affirming the environmental benefits and potential for advanced recycling technologies, as ACC calls them.

Indorama Ventures acquired AG Resinas, a PET reclaimer located in Juiz de Fora, Brazil.

Security Matters, an Australian tech company, wrote in support of a carbon credit” system for plastics to reduce reliance on virgin and single-use plastics.

Equipment supplier Starlinger introduced multiple corporate social responsibility measures.

The nonprofit Plastic Diversion Initiative released a white paper focused on methods to improve plastics recycling.

Unifi, which recycles PET into REPREVE brand fiber, announced it has recycled more than 20 billion bottles, a goal the company set in 2017.

The Association of Plastic Recyclers (APR) announced seven more companies have joined its Recycling Demand Champions program: Fraser Plastics, Fusion Packaging, Intertape Polymer Group, rPlanet Earth, Sabert, Silgan Dispensing and Westfall Technik.

Berry Global will produce Philadelphia cream cheese containers made from chemically recycled plastic, through the company’s partnership with SABIC.

The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI) announced the new directors for its plastics commodity division are Sunil Bagaria of GDB International, Scott Saunders of KW Plastics and Jonathan Cohen of Generated Materials Recovery.