In recent times, there has been a growing awareness of the importance of companies turning to the reuse of plastic materials that have been discarded in the environment to give them a second life. The objective is to offer new and environmentally friendly products.
In the Dutch city of Rotterdam, for example, they opened the Recycled Park in 2018. This is a very interesting initiative: a series of green spaces built on floating platforms made of recycled plastic, as designed by architect Ramon Knoester.
Also renowned footwear brands (Nike, Adidas, Converse) are incorporating the use of recycled plastic in their operations, reaching up to 50% of reused plastic in the final product. Within the fashion industry, other clothing brands (The North Face, Prada, H&M) use recycled fibers in their fabrics, bags, etc.
It is worth mentioning other equally sustainable projects such as the manufacture of posts, urban furniture, or construction materials that replace wood and are made 100% from recycled plastic. These products provide added benefits such as high resistance to humidity or fire, no splintering or deformation. Moreover, the resulting finish is very high quality and much resembles the wood that is being replaced.
There are also such various sustainable alternatives in the packaging industry that we operate within. It is worth mentioning the recovery of post-consumer PET plastics to food grade material with improvements in intrinsic viscosity (IV) to be reused in the manufacture of safe new containers.
The possibilities of using this waste are infinite and there is still a long way to go. But it is demonstrated that the development of an economic activity is compatible with a circular and responsible economy. Here at PET Packaging Network (PPN) we encourage more and more companies to support this development with environmentally friendly business practices.