Bringing the PET bottles and food containers as well as polyester textiles back to its constituents, monomers or low molecular weight components that allow purification means in principle endless re-use of these PET building blocks. This is different to Mechanical Recycling where colours, additives and other polymers in multi-layer constructions reduce recyclability. Monomer Recycling avoids down-cycling and allows up-cycling, it is circularity. It helps solving the waste problem by giving all PET waste value. After all efforts from consumers and by the industry to collect and sort the plastic, we can give a guarantee that PET is recycled and does not leave the circle to incineration or landfill.
“PET Monomer Recycling has the potential to double recycled content rates. With only mechanically recycled PET, rates of 30% are the limit, at higher levels of r-PET content the quality of bottles and trays decreases. PET monomer recycling in combination with mechanical recycling can make recycled content of 70 to 80% feasible on a sustainable basis”, stresses Wim Hoenderdaal, Chairman of the new Petcore Europe Special Industry Group.
Petcore Europe, the industry organization representing the whole PET value chain, launched the “Special Industry Group – SIG” to establish a strong and sustainable value chain in the development of re-using the monomers from PET waste.
Christian Crépet, Executive Director of Petcore Europe explains: “The mission of this new group is to facilitate a platform to position PET monomer recycling as a viable addition to the established mechanical recycling process, enhancing the circularity of PET.”
The SIG will use the networking and outreach of the Petcore Organization to interact with legislators, regulators, NGOs and other stakeholders to ensure chemical recycling of PET is an acceptable business and fulfills the future requirements of business environment. The Group will work to ensure health and safety aspects as well as product acceptance is achieved.