RPET- Recycled Polyethylene Terephthalate: Have you Ever thought how and why PET is recyclable?
GET insights about PET:
Polyethylene Terephthalate is usually abbreviated as PPT or PETE. It is a thermoplastic polymer used in Fibers for clothing, containers food and beverages, thermoforming for manufacturing and combine with glass for engineering resins. PET is recyclable and has “1” resin identification code, the code which is used to identify plastic resin out of which product is made. It is naturally colorless, semi-crystalline resin used mostly in soft drinks manufacturers.
Bio plastics are widely used in packaging industry. It is a plastic that has 70% renewable raw material and 20% oil-based raw material. This makes it renewable.
Why its important to Collect Post-consumer PET bottles?
PET bottles are highly sophisticated material and it is highly valuable to throw it in bin. It can recycle, which means we can produce many new products using the used bottles. Every year billions of bottle waste getting around the world. By collecting the whole waste can drastically reduce the waste and safeguard the environment. This recycling of PET start from collecting the huge waste and compressing it to the huge bales and transferring it to the recycling Plants and the PET bottles are crushed into flakes.
The empty PET discarded from the consumer is known as Post-consumer PET in recycling industry. The Government or local recycling agencies collect this waste and ship it to the material recovery facilities.
Sorting of Post-consumer PET Bottles:
The collected post-consumer PET bottles are sorted according to the colors. It mostly fractioned in uncolored/transparent, green, blue, and remaining into the mixed fractions. The colorless/light blue Post-consumer PET are more preferred than other colors hence the price of colorless or light blue is high.
Further Treatment by Recycling companies:
The recycling companies make the Post-consumer PET Water Bottles to undergo four process such as crushing, washing, separating and drying. Then finally they shred the PET bottles into small fragments which still have some residues like paper, bottle caps etc. It can be separated by granulation process resulting in pure PET flakes. This resultant PET is used as a raw material for many PET bottles manufacturing and other PET products manufacturing.
Global Statistics report of Post-consumer PET Bottles:
As per the recent Report, approximately 7.5 million tones of empty PET were collected in 2011. As there is an increase in usage of PET bottles parallelly the collection of Post-consumer PET also Increases.
The European association collected 1.6million tones of PET in 2011 and 1.12 million of PET flakes were produced.
In 2021, as of forecasted report it says that around 9.4 million tones of plastics were recycled.
According to the recent survey, Worldwide production of PET bottles have been increases from 485 billion to 583.3 billion in 2021.
Why the resin is best compared to virgin Plastic?
Virgin is the purest form of Plastic and contain less impurities compare to Resins and are more durable and perform well. When we say recycled Plastics or resins its cost is cheap than virgin plastic. Recycled plastics are more eco- friendly. The company which uses this resin can brand them as an eco-friendly player. For instance, Coco cola company uses 20% of resins for packaging.
Though it is eco-friendly, if you’re planning to use the recycled plastics as a food or beverage containers then it must undergo cleaning process to free from contamination. There are some challenges and legal confirmation associated with recycled plastics in food industry.
Process of making PET flakes to PET bottles.
After undergoing recycling process, we get the end product in the form of flakes which is known as PET Flakes. After testing the quality of the flakes/pellets and ensured it is 100% safe they are turned back into bottles. To produce the PET bottles, we use Injection stretch blow molding machine or PET blow molding machine. This sophisticated machine melts the flakes and dries it and turns it to preforms. The injection molding injects the preforms into desired molds and the robots cool and pay the production. Finally, the preform come out in perfect shape which is easy to transport and ready to make a new bottle. We need blow molding machine to cool the preforms by blowing the air into the preforms to get perfect shape and its is packaged and ready for the distribution. This way of making bottles from recycled plastics there won’t be any wastage or nothing to sent to landfills. You can’t find any unnecessary drain on new resources and it’s the best resource and have wide usability.
Different form of recycle plastics/resins
- Polyethylene terephthalate
- Polyvinyl chloride
- Low-density polyethylene
- High-density polyethylene
Keep away Hazardous plastic and give a way to bio plastics:
As per the estimation of United nations, life of 1 million marine birds and 100 thousand marine animals were destroyed due to the heavy usage of plastics. These Virgin plastics has devasting effect to environment. To overcome this effect and to safeguard the marine lives some entrepreneurs come up with an idea of using Bio Plastics as their raw materials to manufacture food packaging containers or water bottles.
The packaging industry is looking for eco friendly packaging products to safeguard our environment. Though there might be some production waste leakage to the environment exists, our main focus is waste management. Now the consumption of PET bottles is 6% less compared to plastic usage. If all manufactures and packaging industry step forward to use Bio-degradable and reusable plastics this might be the great initiative to use alternate resources for hazardous raw materials.
Companies that capitalize of eco-friendly trend:
These companies confronted that usage of plastics slowly taking our planets life because of what we experience frequent climatic change, rising sea level, global warming etc. here are some companies dedicatedly thriving this eco-friendly way of transferring waste into their own brand products along with high-quality.
- Parley x Adidas
- Girlfriend collective
Know the fact!
Klean kanteen is the most eco-friendly water bottle in the market.
Green Planet launches 100% plant-based bottle which is toxic free and carbon neutral.
Coco-cola holds the top position for contributing to the global plastic problem. Nestle, PepsiCo, and many other companies are accountable for their plastic pollution.