Extrusion International USA 3-2021

40 Extrusion International 3/2021 RECYCLING To take a look at the recycling quanti- ties in Europe helps to put this number in relation. An estimated 4.3 million tons of PET packaging waste is gener- ated annually in the European Union and around half is actually sorted for recycling 1 . With the capacity installed by Starlinger viscotec, almost the en- tire amount of collected and sorted PET packaging waste in the European Union could be processed to produce recycled PET (rPET). Commitment to recycling Starlinger viscotec is specialised in sheet extrusion lines and plants for re- cycling and re fi nement of PET packag- ing waste into recyclate in food-grade quality for food and beverage packag- ing applications. “Our solutionsmake it possible to recycle valuable rawmateri- als. Our partners and customers share our conviction that PET can and must be recycled,” says Angelika Huemer, Managing Director of Starlinger GmbH & Co. “To recycle contains the word food in the EuropeanUnion. “Wewant to raise awareness that PET food pack- aging is a valuable rawmaterial. By us- ing recycled PET for packaging, a lot of CO 2 emissions are avoided. Many peo- ple are not aware of the fact that the carbon footprint of beverage bottles made from rPET is signi fi cantly smaller than that of reusable glass bottles,” points out Julia Peherstorfer, respon- sible for sustainability and marketing at Starlinger viscotec. “Every consumer can contribute by collecting the bev- erage bottles and packaging via the waste collection system, so they can be recycled. It is the collaboration of con- sumers that makes it possible for the PET packaging waste to be processed again into new food packaging made from recycled PET (rPET).“ 1 Source: eunomia (2020), “PET MARKET IN EUROPE: STATE OF PLAY”, retrieved 25.March 2021 from https://743c8380-22- c6-4457-9895-11872f2a708a.filesusr.com/ugd/dda42a_e0c40- c546a7446daa7ba5e0bedd67cca.pdf, page 12. An estimated 4.3 milliontonsofPETrigidPackagingended itsproduct lifeandwas therefore available for collection in 2018, of which 45% (1.9MT) wascollectedandsortedforRecyclingacrosstheEU-28countries. Starlinger viscotec www.viscotec.at Starlinger & Co. GmbH www.starlinger.com 2 Million Tons of Installed Recycling Capacity Worldwide Celebrated In spring 2021 viscotec, a division of the Austrian machinery supplier Starlinger & Co GmbH, reached a milestone: an impressive 2 million tons of capacity are available for the production of PET recyclate on viscotec systems worldwide “CYCLE”. Closing the loop is exactly what recyclers and packaging manu- facturers do with Starlinger recoSTAR and viscoSTAR systems: they produce recyclatewhich is safe for food contact. A beverage bottle can be turned into a beverage bottle again after recycling.” For food packaging, PET/rPET currently meets the requirementof aclosed loop. A beverage bottle, however, which af- ter recycling becomes, for example, a car interior trim, goes into a so-called “end-of-life” application and thus is lost for the food packaging recycling loop. Why recycled PET (rPET) PET is of particular importance: it has the highest recycling rate among plas- tics and is currently the only recycled plastic that is approved for contactwith Closing the loop in PET recycling PET fl akes and rPET packaging Portfolio of PET recycling solutions by Starlinger viscotec