Sabic, Mars and Landbell team up in closed-loop recycling project

Sabic has joined forces with Mars and Landbell Group in an advanced recycling project designed to close the loop on flexible packaging using certified circular polypropylene.

In a joint initiative with market players, biaxially oriented polypropylene (BOPP) film based on Sabic’s certified circular polypropylene (PP) from feedstock recycling of post-consumer, used plastics will be introduced by Mars in the packaging of its Kind snack bar brand.

“We are very excited about this pioneering closed-loop project that demonstrates the feasibility and speed of implementing circular plastic innovations when leading actors from across the entire value chain are closely collaborating,” said Lada Kurelec, general manager PP, PET, PS, PVC, PU & elastomers businesses for petrochemicals at Sabic. “Used flexible packaging has a high feedstock value for new materials, and our Trucircle polymers and services form an instrumental element in tapping this vast potential.”

The new mono-material packaging continues the partners’ efforts to support a circular economy by incorporating advanced recycled content in healthy snack bar packaging.

“At Mars, we want to contribute to a circular economy where packaging material never becomes waste, but is recycled, reused or composted. For this to happen, we need new solutions and infrastructure to change the recycling landscape and to compliment mechanical recycling,” added Barry Parkin, chief procurement & sustainability officer at Mars.

“Mixed used plastic from flexible consumer packaging is difficult to sort and recycle mechanically,” added Uwe Echteler, chief operating officer, for Landbell Group. “However, as demonstrated in this closed-loop project, we can facilitate effective advanced recycling solutions that allow plastics and packaging manufacturers as well as OEMs and brand owners to reclaim and benefit from the value of mixed used plastics while at the same time reducing fossil depletion and enhancing their carbon footprint.”

The loop starts with the collection of mixed used plastics coordinated by Landbell Group, who works with Hündgen Entsorgung to sort the mixed used plastics and delivers the mixed material to Plastic Energy, a global leader in advanced recycling technology, where it is converted to pyrolysis oil in a patented thermal anaerobic conversion process.

The pyoil serves as alternative feedstock in Sabic’s production process of virgin-quality food-contact approved PP polymer, which is pelletised and supplied to Taghleef Industries, a world leading provider of BOPP film.

SIT Group, a key supplier of high-quality printed flexible plastic packaging to the European consumer market, uses the BOPP film manufactured by Taghleef with Sabic’s certified circular polymer to create printed BOPP roll-fed packaging for Kind brand snack bars and delivers it to Mars.

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