A consortium of 12 European companies and organisations has secured €1.9 million (£1.58 million) funding from the European Union to develop and improve quality procedures for food contact recycled PET.
In total the EU and the companies in the SuperCleanQ consortium will contribute €2.4 million to the project that in particular will look at developing a new process for recycling of coloured and layered PET into food contact application. This currently cannot be handled by current PET recycling facilities, according to SuperCleanQ.
The SuperCleanQ scheme also intends to expand the high value market for recycled plastics and help European SME recyclers reprocess plastic waste that is currently being exported.
The consortium intends:
- To develop a post-market challenge test for validation of recycled food contact materials with 100% reliability;
- To introduce a post-process validation quality protocol for assuring the efficacy of plastics recycling processes for food contact applications with 100% reliability;
- Development of a process to recycle the 700,000 t/y of currently unrecyclable coloured and layered PET that cannot be processed by existing PET recycling facilities for food contact packaging; and
- In-line monitoring for process quality control to indentify contaminants from oxo-degradable additives, biodegradable plastics, bisphenol A, and non-food contact compliant levels of chemical contamination.
Members of SuperCleanQ include the British Plastics Federation, the University of Essex, S&S Separation and Sorting Technology, and other companies and bodies throughout Europe.