After recycling, post-consumer PET plastic packaging is subjected to secondary selection. The packaging is sorted by colour, crushed, packed, and transported to the processing plant.
The processing plant is the place, where the recycling process truly begins. Firstly, the bales of PET packaging are unpacked. All labels, glue and other impurities are then removed from the packaging, preparing it for the next stage – grinding. The cleaned packaging is ground into PET flakes, which are then subjected to secondary clean, this time with the help of special cleaning machines.
With the help of an air stream, lighter materials, such as stickers or sand are removed from heavier flakes. After crystallization and drying of the material, a granulate is formed, which can be reused in the production of PET bottles. This recycled PET material is called rPET.
It is worth mentioning, that not every rPET is suitable for food products. Only rPET made of transparent (clear and blue) granulate can be turned into food-grade material.
At Amhil, we also recycle PET. All post-production cut offs are being turned back into granulate and re-used as an rPET material for our ECO cups.
Our offer includes 3 types of rPET:
- 100 post-consumer – Infinity
- Min 45% post-industrial – ECO
What is ABA?
ABA is the type of PET material formed from 3 layers, 2 outer layers are made out of 100% food-safe virgin PET. The inside layer is made out of rPET, which does not have to be food-grade. The virgin PET layer ensures 0 migration, therefore the overall product is perfectly safe to use with food.
So is it worth segregating?
Absolutely! PET bottles, cups, and lids can be mechanically recycled and then processed up to 7 times – up to 3 times as another bottle or cups, and later as a part of textiles or packaging for cleaning products.
What happens to the plastic, when it can no longer be recycled?
After exceeding its recyclability, PET waste is burned and used as an energy source. However, it is worth remembering, that there is a lot of investment into recycling innovation that would allow almost unlimited processing of plastic and creating a truly circular economy, where nothing goes to waste.