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EREMA Discovery Days sheds lights on circular economy
Issue date:29/06/2018
CPRJ Editorial Team
(VC)
The COREMA 1108T RegrindPro machine in the R&D Center at EREMA.
The COREMA 1108T RegrindPro machine in the R&D Center at EREMA.
Photo: 123

The circular economy, one of the big issues of the plastics and recycling industries, is the focus of the EREMA Discovery Days 2018 held on 27 – 29 June in Ansfelden, Austria. It is important for circular economy to be successful, but how?

On the second day of the event, prominent speakers from EREMA and key players from the industries presented some insights.

Echo with high quality recycled products

Axel Kühner, CEO of the Greiner Group.According to Axel Kühner, CEO of the Greiner Group, plastic packaging materials flows are mainly linear with only a limited amount are being recycled. As he said, less than 14% of plastics are being recycled, and there will be more plastics than fish in the ocean by 2050 by weight. Therefore, the industry should adopt a new approach of circular economy which means to create an after-use plastic economy.

He proposed actions should be done in three aspects: recycling more materials, optimize the recycling process, and better eco design. “We have to look at the whole picture, and the solutions have to really fit the whole supply chain,” he said.

For Greiner Group, the company echoes the call for circular economy by producing high quality packaging with recycled materials, including packaging for body care product and food with 95% r-HDPE and 70%r-PET respectively. In addition, the company adopts the strategy “Plastic for Life” with working groups focusing on product quality and safety, as well as promoting sustainability in the core of conducts/terms and conditions of supplier section.

The US-based S.C. Johnson also contributes to circular economy by showing that recycled products do have end markets. In a lighthouse project, the company sent curbside films collected in the US to EREMA to process, and then produce Ziploc trash bags made with 100% post-consumer recycled plastic films.

Anton Wolfsberger, Head of Marketing Consumer Products & Pipe, Borealis AG (left) and Alexander van Veen, Managing Director & Commercial TS&D Europe, Braskem Netherlands B.V. (center).

Meanwhile, in the panel discussion, representatives from chemical companies emphasized the importance of emerging recycled materials. 

Anton Wolfsberger, Head of Marketing Consumer Products & Pipe, Borealis AG, said the company is engaging in a lot of sustainability projects as materials have to be recycled will be the next challenge ahead. He also mentioned that materials segmentation will be very important in the future.

Alexander van Veen, Managing Director & Commercial TS&D Europe, Braskem Netherlands B.V., believes that bio-based materials will drive sustainability forward. “Materials will be replaced by recycling materials, whether by chemical or mechanical recycling,” he remarked.

Introduce new one-stop recycling plant engineering

In order for the circular economy to be successful, cutting edge recycling facilities are one of the key elements. At the Discover Days, EREMA introduced the new KEYCYCLE service.

Michal Prochazka, Head of Business Unit KEYCYCLE at EREMA.“In the future, there will be more complex specifications in the recycling industry. Besides, there will be more players and industrialization too,” said Michal Prochazka, Head of Business Unit KEYCYCLE at EREMA. The introduction of KEYCYCLE is to address this trend.

The KEYCLCE service provides support to customers in the whole recycling process, including the feasibility studies, complete engineering and integration, and overall project management.

EREMA is convinced that circular economy is a trigger for cooperation and collaboration. “Network is the key here,” explained Michal Prochazka. “EREMA forms a powerful network with different partners in different fields, so a one-stop service can be provided to customer."

The Ziploc trash bags made with 100% post-consumer recycled plastic films.

During the event, attendants visited the R&D Center of EREMA in which two machines were running. The COREMA 1108T RegrindPro, which can perform recycling & compounding in a single step, was processing PP rigids from bulky household waste with a compound of four additional components. The material is used for injection molding goods and household appliances.

Meanwhile, the INTAREMA TVEplus with double filtration was processing LDPE household film waste with high moisture and strong contamination of approx. 3%. The aforementioned Ziploc trash bags are one of the end products of the materials produced.


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