New technologies give a boost to circular plastics

3 July 2024 | Muriel Cozier

‘Flexible packaging films play a valuable role in society…’

The Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO) has established two separate partnerships to enhance its Möbious dissolution-based recycling technology for polyolefin plastic residue waste streams. The technology is a physical recycling method developed to selectively dissolve certain polymers from a plastic mixture under superheated conditions.

A collaboration with Braskem will see the partners investigate the feasibility and scale-up potential of the Möbious recycling technology. The partners aim to improve the purification of plastic residues, removing many of the impurities leading to production of ‘near-virgin’ grade polymer resin. It is anticipated that the value and scope of applications for the recycled materials will be enhanced for use in areas such as food contact packaging.

Partnering with Elix Polymers, a European producer of ABS reins and derivatives,TNO will also develop its Möbius technology to tackle the ABS waste stream – a material that is often too degraded for reuse.

In a separate development, Ineos Olefins & Polymers Europe has commissioned a multilayer, blown film line at its R&D centre in Brussels, Belgium. The company said that this move will allow it to work with customers to co-develop recyclable flexible packaging films. These films can be used instead of the more difficult to recycle multi-material packaging films to meet the requirements of the EU Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation. Ineos has said that its new line, which also has Machine Direction Orientation, is a world first and the films produced will mean that some one millions tonnes of waste will be prevented from going to landfill each year.

‘Flexible packaging films play a valuable role in society […] Everyday we work alongside stakeholders across the value chain who share our commitment to a circular economy, developing more sustainable solutions to meet consumer needs,’ said Rob Ingram CEO of ineos Olefins & Polymers Europe.

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