Stadler, Krones say PET circular economy is forming
Technology, EU regulations and public demand to recycle plastic are all bolstering the prospects to recycle plastic packaging.
Photo courtesy of Stadler Anlagenbau GmbH.

Stadler, Krones say PET circular economy is forming

Equipment companies say technology and demand exists for PET packaging recycling systems.

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Two Germany-based recycling equipment and technology bottles have issued an essay reinforcing the notion that the technology exists to recycled polyethylene terephthalate (PET) packaging back into new bottles, creating a circular economy subsector.

Stadler Anlagenbau GmbH, a maker of sorting systems and equipment, and Krones AG, a provider of PET recycling, washing and reprocessing systems, say used PET bottles and other forms of packaging can be a valuable resource for the packaging sector and other industries and can play an important role in addressing the environmental impact of plastic.

“Until recently, there were no specifications for the use of recyclates in manufacturing new products, but this is not the case anymore,” says Roland Göggel, sales director for Germany, Austria and Switzerland at Stadler.

“The European Union has introduced new regulations stipulating that beverage bottles must contain 25 percent recycled content by 2025 and 30 percent by 2030,” adds Göggel. “At least as important is the appearance of new collection and recycling routes for plastic packaging, which together with changes in consumer behavior will give recycling an enormous boost.”

He continues, “The plastics manufacturing and processing industry is now showing great interest in recycling, which was not the case in the past. However, the targets set by the EU regulation can only be achieved if all sectors involved in the process work together.”

Stadler says it has seen an opportunity to close the recycling circle and has partnered with Krones. Their aim is “to harness the advantages of plastics recycling for customers around the world to benefit customers as simply and profitably as possible.”

States Willi Stadler, CEO of the company that carries his family name, “We want to provide our customers with the highest quality material output in the industry.”

The two companies will offer what they say is a complete package, from sorting through to the washing process, and all the way to the creation of a new plastic product.

“This cooperation partnership enables us to offer process engineering from heterogeneous waste mixtures to the finished plastic bottle,” says Göggel. “As far as I know, no other company on the market can offer this extensive process competence. Having the entire processing under one roof means that the concepts can be improved and adapted even more specifically to the task at hand, both qualitatively and economically.”

Although PET is a common packaging resin, it is not the only target of the Stadler and Krones partnership. “We can offer solutions not only for plastics such as PET, but also for mass plastics such as polyethylene (PE), polypropylene (PP) or polystyrene (PS), making an important contribution toward achieving the EU recycling targets.”

The partnership aims to offer customers what they call “tried-and-tested solutions as complete single-sourced turnkey plants” and to develop new solutions, processes and technologies for the sorting and treatment of scrap.