Viridor invests £1 million in HDPE sorting


A £1 million investment has been made by Viridor into an advanced flake optical sorting station on the HDPE line at its polymer recycling facility in Skelmersdale.

The new technology has increased the site’s yield of valuable and high quality natural HDPE for colour critical applications.


Viridor Polymer Recycling’s site at Skelmersdale recycles 3,000 tonnes of plastic bottles each month from Viridor’s local authority contracts and private customers producing high quality plastic pellets and flakes ready for use in remanufacture.

The installation of the new technology was completed earlier this year and include two state-of-the-art optical sorters which accurately remove non-natural HDPE flakes that are typically between 2mm and 12mm in size.

Using equipment supplied by Bühler Sortex, it produces a high purity natural HDPE and a coloured HDPE that can be compounded into black pellet.

Viridor trading sales manager for plastics Stuart Kershaw said: “The investment in this advanced flake sorting station came as a result of a UK market requirement for a consistent volume of HDPE natural compound. This can be used for a variety of colour critical extrusion/blow moulding applications, including but not limited to conduit, sheet, wood polymer composite and bottles.

“We are now producing 500 tonnes of the HDPE natural product each month, adding to the volumes of HDPE black and clear flake.

“Our latest investment underlines our commitment to quality and innovation in recycling. As a business, Viridor is aiming to reduce export reliance with a focus on providing high quality polymer for use within the demanding UK market. Our continuous supply of HDPE natural is unique within this country.”