PET ‘bottle to bottle’ recycling unit
The France Plastiques Recyclage (FPR) - a joint venture for SITA France, a Suez Environment subsidiary, and the Paprec Group - has opened its first PET bottle recycling unit in Limay, France. At the successful completion of the 40-million-euro project, the plant will be able to recycle 40,000 tonnes of bottles per year, which will be directly usable, in granulate form, in the manufacture of new bottles or food product containers.
The process implemented in this facility is particularly innovative: it enables the production of PET granulates that have the same properties as those of unused raw material, and which are compliant with the strictest sanitary standards. Notably, granulates made by the FPR recycling unit will conform to the recommendation issued by AFSSA, the French food safety agency, which authorises PET re-use in the manufacture of new bottles and, more generally, of material intended to be in contact with food. According to this standard, future new plastic bottles will be allowed to contain from 25 to 50% recycled raw materials.
Located in the Port of Paris compound at Limay, the FPR recycling unit optimises the transport of materials coming in by water and rail. Between 5000 and 10,000 tonnes of incoming materials will be transported on the waterway - the equivalent of 300 to 600 truckloads. From its start-up in 2010, the plant will employ up to 80 people and will operate seven days a week.
Over the past decade, the regeneration of PET bottles found its main applications in the production of synthetic fibres. The expansion into the field of plastics for food use opens a new potential market for recycling industrialists whose size in Europe is estimated at 750,000 tonnes. From 2010 onwards, the FPR unit is expected to process 40,000 tonnes of bottles annually, converting them into 30,000 tonnes of recycled raw material (r-PET).
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