It is difficult for manufacturers to resume work, and the path of plastic bottle recycling

It is difficult for manufacturers to resume work, and the path of plastic bottle recycling

Affected by the epidemic situation and the decline in oil prices, insufficient supply of recycled plastic bottles and increased manufacturing costs have prevented the beverage giant's use of recycled plastics from being achieved as scheduled;

Coca-Cola failed to achieve the goal of using 50% recycled plastic bottles in all UK beverage bottles from the end of May; Danone failed to achieve its plan to use all recycled plastics in Volvic bottles sold in Germany since April;

The beverage giant is still showing its willingness to use recycled plastics, and Coca-Cola will set up a plastic recycling plant in Indonesia.

Under the epidemic situation, the progress of recycling projects was blocked, the shortage of recycled plastic bottles, coupled with the sharp drop in oil prices, the cost of recycled plastic bottles soared, and the global beverage giants faced an ambitious road to recycled plastics.

For example, Coca-Cola failed to achieve the goal of using 50% recycled plastics for all UK beverage bottles from the end of May; Danone failed to achieve its goal of using Volvic bottles sold in Germany since April, all of which are made of recycled plastics. Can achieve the relevant goals set in Britain and France.

Insufficient supply of waste plastic bottles and increased costs

Global beverage giants such as Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Nestlé and Danone have set ambitious sustainable development goals, promising to use more recycled plastics in mineral water, soda and juice beverage bottles to mitigate the public's Environmental concerns.

For example, PepsiCo announced that it will use 25% recycled PET content in its plastic packaging by 2025; Coca-Cola plans to achieve 50% renewable content of its bottled and canned beverages by 2030; Danone is committed to all of it by 2025 25% of the plastic packaging is made of recycled plastics; Nestlé also promised to increase the recycled PET content of its two drinking water brands to 50% by 2025.

Danone's bottled water brand Volvic.

According to the non-profit Container Recycling Institute, less than a third of PET is recycled in the United States, and only 4% of the recycled PET bottles are used to make new bottles. Affected by the New Coronary Pneumonia epidemic, some plastic recycling programs were forced to suspend, and the supply of waste PET plastic bottles was further reduced, which caused the beverage giants who already had insufficient supply of recycled plastic bottles to face more difficult problems.

Under the epidemic, insufficient recycling of waste PET plastic bottles has led to an insufficient supply of recycled plastic PET bottles.

On the other hand, the price of oil plummeted and the price of primary plastics fell, which also made the price competitiveness of recycled plastics weaker. According to Wood Mackenize, the cost of recycled plastics in Europe in May was 95% higher than that of new plastics, up from 35% in the same period last year.

In response to the double predicament faced by recycled plastic bottles, Coca-Cola CEO James Quincey said earlier that the predicament faced by recycled plastics is only temporary, "Maybe we need to make some adjustments to the process of using recycled plastics, but it will be sooner or later to resume the use of recycled plastics. thing."

Danone CEO Emmanuel Faber said earlier this year, "People don't want to see waste plastic bottles anymore. In terms of social acceptance, recycled plastic is a more acceptable solution."

New alternatives take time, and recycled plastic bottles are still ideal

In addition to the use of recycled plastics, beverage companies have also been exploring new alternative solutions. For example, at the beginning of this year, Avantium, a Dutch biochemical company, invested in a new project to manufacture plastics from plant sugar. The manufactured products can be used in composting equipment within a year. break down.

This new plastic-like raw material is made of corn, wheat and beetroot. If it is used to produce beverage bottles, it will greatly reduce the environmental damage caused by plastic bottles. At present, this project has been supported by companies such as Carlsberg, Coca-Cola and Danone.

However, due to the time-consuming progress of the plant-based project, it is reported that the new plant-based plastic project of Avantium is not expected to be implemented until 2023. Therefore, at present, collecting, washing and dissolving waste plastic bottles and creating new bottles are still the ideal solution for producing more sustainable plastic bottles.

Beverage companies have also demonstrated their willingness to continue investing in recycled plastics. According to the Jakarta Post, Coca-Cola will establish a plastic bottle recycling plant in Indonesia and has signed an agreement with plastic packaging company Dynapack Asia to conduct a feasibility study on the development of the facility.

Coca-Cola also promised to reduce its primary plastic resin consumption in Indonesia by 25,000 tons per year by 2022 by using more recycled plastics.

As another example, Nestlé said in January this year that it would invest more than 1.5 billion Swiss francs (1.58 billion US dollars) in the next five years to purchase food-grade recycled plastics. (Source: CPRJ Plastic Rubber)