LyondellBasell and KIRKBI Invest in Solvent-Based LDPE Recycling Technology from APK

  • 10-Feb-2023
  • Journalist: Jaideep

Europe: LyondellBasell and KIRKBI A/S have recently joined forces to invest in APK’s Newcycling recycling technology, a process that involves the separation of different polymers and conversion into recyclate of high quality. This comes as multi-layer flexible packaging materials are said to make up most of the today's plastic waste from the consumer sector, making it necessary to increase its recyclability. The latest investment could prove to be beneficial for both companies, as well as LDPE.

LyondellBasell and KIRKBI have become minority shareholders in the APK Group and have collectively donated €130 million to support its growth ambitions. This investment will fund the installation of additional Newcycling plants, helping to increase the APK Group's production capacity.

“We need to advance the recycling of all types of plastic waste material generated today to support the goal of a circular economy and meet the increasing demand for high quality recycled products,” stated Yvonne van der Laan, LyondellBasell Executive Vice President, Circular and Low Carbon Solutions. “Advancing this technology, through our investment in APK, will enable more plastic packaging waste to be reintroduced back into the value chain and will address the demand from consumers and brand owners for more sustainable packaging.

“Products made using this unique Newcycling solvent-based technology will be a great complementary addition to our existing Circulen product portfolio, which currently offers mechanical and advanced recycling solutions to our customers.”

“We are happy to announce our investment in APK,” continues Damir Hamzic, head of the Circular Plastics Investment at KIRKBI. “KIRKBI believes APK offers a promising scalable technology in LDPE recycling that can help increase the circularity of plastics and minimize plastic waste, to contribute to a more sustainable environment in the future. We look forward to providing strategic, financial, and commercial support while APK establishes technology that will complement mechanical and chemical recycling.”

“Our Newcycling technology makes it possible to close the loop even with complex waste streams and to produce high-quality LDPE recyclates from mixed plastic waste – highly efficient and offering both economic and ecological advantages,” stated Susanne Kuppers, Member of the Executive Board of APK AG and Managing Director of APK NCC. “We have been proving for years that this is also possible on an industrial scale at our plant in Merseburg.

“We are pleased to now ignite the next stage and are proud to have LyondellBasell and KIRKBI as two strong supporters at our side, who bring a lot of additional expertise, for example in the areas of polymer design and application know how.”

Borealis, a leading player in the global recycled material industry, has just acquired a majority stake in Renasci, a provider of chemical recycling solutions. This move is expected to increase Borealis' access to chemically recycled feedstock, giving them a major boost in their industry-leading environmental efforts.

UKRI recently funded Nextek Ltd's new project COtooCLEAN, which is aimed at developing a method to produce food-grade recyclate from Polyolefin film waste. The innovative process uses supercritical CO2 and green co-solvents to decontaminate the waste material without the need for water.

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