Silvergate Plastics, the UK’s largest producer of custom colour masterbatch, has partnered with Just Egg Ltd to develop a bio-filler produced from crushed egg shells.
Just Egg Ltd is an award-winning manufacturer of hard boiled eggs, egg mayonnaise and egg-related products. The company, which operates from its manufacturing facility in the East Midlands, was founded in 2003 by Pankaj Pancholi who has over twenty-five years’ experience in the food industry. Just Egg Ltd supplies major retailers, as well as sandwich makers, Scotch egg manufacturers and the pickling trade.
As a producer of over 60 million eggs per year, Just Egg Ltd was looking for an innovative and ecologically sound way to discard egg shells. Sending them to landfill cost £50,000 per annum, so the company turned to Leicester University to help identify an alternative solution. It was here that the concept of using the egg shells, of which the major component is made of calcium carbonate, as a bio-filler for plastics was presented to Pancholi.
Pancholi presented these findings at last year’s Plastikcity Conference in London where he met Silvergate Plastics. At its manufacturing facilities in Wrexham, North Wales, Silvergate produces colour, additive and multi-component masterbatches that improve production processes, enhance the performance of end applications and maintain brand integrity.
Having discussed the innovation, Silvergate agreed to take in crushed and cleaned egg shells from Just Egg Ltd, and process them into filler for masterbatch, which can be used in any application. The egg shells replace traditional filler and help reduce the amount of ground polymer used in the masterbatch formulation. This novel bio-filler can be used to create any colour, including black.