To address the growing need for a system that recycles post-consumer plastic waste in Mexico, Nestlé Mexico has signed an agreement with Greenback Recycling Technologies and Enval to bring a chemical recycling plant for flexible plastic packaging. This will promote a closed loop economy for food-grade plastic, which includes aluminum-laminated and multilayer flexible plastic variants.
The facility will house a microwave-induced pyrolysis technology, which turns plastic into oil feedstock. This then is used to create new plastic, turning even unrecyclable items into ones that are valuable and sustainable. This innovation, developed by UK-based Enval, is the only one capable of recycling aluminum laminates.
It’s forecasted that 6,000 tonnes of flexible packaging will be accommodate in the first year of operations alone, with volume and capacity increasing over time. This recycling plant will reduce carbon and plastic footprint and contribute to the Mexican waste ecosystem and Swiss company’s eco2Veritas circularity platform.
Fausto Costa, Nestlé Mexico CEO shares, “Making safe recycled plastics for food packaging is a huge challenge for our industry. Therefore, in addition to minimising the use of plastics and collecting waste, we want to close the loop and make more plastics infinitely recyclable. This project with Greenback and Enval fully supports the mission of ensuring that our plastic packaging is not only recyclable but actually recycled. It also ensures that we are drastically reducing plastic waste pollution and supports our work with local communities.”
“This project in Mexico will tackle the unresolved problem of turning multi-laminate and mixed plastics that are difficult to recycle into a recyclable waste stream. The aim is to reduce the challenges that exist in packaging recycling, transforming these waste resources into pyrolysis oil that can be used for the manufacture of certified recycled food packaging,” Philippe von Stauffenberg, Founder and CEO of Greenback, commented.
Carlos Ludlow-Palafox, Founder and CEO of Enval, added: “This project demonstrates the importance of collaboration between companies at different stages of the supply chain to tackle the challenge of plastics in the environment. At Enval, we know that plastics are not the enemy and that these materials have a valuable role in our daily lives. However, we also know that there is no reason they should end up in the sea or on top of a mountain. Our technology allows the recycling of packaging that was previously considered unrecyclable, and we are delighted that our first plant, in collaboration with an FMCG as committed to sustainability as Nestlé and in partnership with Greenback, will be soon operating in Mexico.”