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The RECIPAM project is developing new recycling methods for multilayer food packaging.
The RECIPAM project is developing new recycling methods for multilayer food packaging.

Multilayer plastic packaging waste represents a serious environmental concern because it is not always managed in the best possible way, and incineration and landfill rates are still very high.

Separating the different layers calls for new technologies and recycling processes that raise the price of the entire process and make it much less technically and economically feasible.

Another difficulty is the current low demand for recycled plastics, which account for only 6% of total plastics demand in Europe and are often limited to low added-value applications.

To address this challenge, AIMPLAS, the Plastics Technology Centre, is leading the RECIPAM project, which is funded by the Valencian Innovation Agency (AVI).

The participants include the companies ACTECO, UBE, FAPERIN and REPOL, with the collaboration of the Valencian Association of Plastics Entrepreneurs (AVEP).

The project aims to develop new recycling processes to obtain polyamides (PA) from multilayer packaging waste for foodstuffs. A delamination process will be included to separate the polyamides, as well as a compatibilization process to reprocess them with other plastic materials in order to obtain compounds of sufficient quality.

The goal is to create a multilayer packaging recycling chain by involving and collaborating with the entire value chain through the industrial implementation of the recycling processes developed and following the validation of the technical performance and quality of the recycled polyamides by using them instead of virgin plastics in high value-added applications, including those involving food contact.

The project will help address the challenges defined by the strategic innovation committees specializing in the circular economy in the Valencian Community.

It will help recover waste more efficiently, either by improving the separation of multilayer plastics or their recovery through mechanical recycling and pyrolysis. It will also make it possible to supply more sustainable consumer goods by using recycled material in the manufacture of new high-quality products.

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