The plastics bottle recycling firm ECO Plastics, Hemswell, U.K., has received planning permission from the Lincolnshire, U.K.,
County Council for a £15 million (US$24.5 million) expansion at its Hemswell sorting facility. The expansion—a joint venture between the company and Coca-Cola Enterprises (CCE)—will supply food-grade recycled PET (polyethylene terephthalate) to CCE and is expected to create 30 jobs.
Under the joint venture agreement, which was signed in March 2011, ECO Plastics will develop a facility to run in tandem with its existing plant.
The agreement will result in ECO Plastics continuing to source, sort and clean used plastics, which it will recycle into PET flakes. The material will be used to produce preforms in the manufacturing of bottles for CCE.
ECO Plastics says its existing plant is the largest, most sophisticated of its kind in Europe. The expansion will increase its capacity from 100,000 metric tons per year to 140,000 metric tons per year, nearly 50 percent of the total plastic bottles collected within the U.K. last year, according to the company. ECO Plastics says that nearly 40,000 metric tons of the material produced will be food-grade recycled PET pellet, an increase of 25,000 metric tons per year from the plant’s current capacity, and almost 70 percent of domestic production.
In addition to having signed a 10 year off-take contract, CCE will provide £5 million toward the creation of the new facility. ECO Plastics will raise the remaining £10 million.
Commenting on the announcement, Peter Gangsted, ECO Plastics chairman, says, “Today’s announcement is the next phase in ECO Plastics’ development. Over the last year we have successfully transformed our plant into the largest and most sophisticated in Europe, renamed the business and signed a major deal with the world’s biggest beverage brand.”
Nick Brown, commercial recycling manager for CCE, adds, “This project represents a major milestone for addressing the recycling challenges in this country. Coca-Cola Enterprises has committed to using 25 percent of recycled PET pellet into all our plastic bottles in Britain by 2012, and our investment with ECO Plastics is a key for making this a reality.”
Source : www.recyclingtoday.com