Recycling not a problem for bioplastics

Bioplastic manufacturer NatureWorks says automated systems currently used in plastic recycling has the capability to 100% sort out bioplastic bottles from other petroleum-based plastic bottles.

“This finding is significant because it demonstrates that there is no technological barrier to recycling bottles made from plants instead of oil,” according to NatureWorks.

For the past two years, NatureWorks says it has surveyed equipment manufacturers such as Titech, Unisensor, and MSS, that have systems with the potential to sort biopolymers from such other plastics as PET (polyethylene terepthalate), HDPE (high density polyethylene), PVC (polyvinyl chloride), and PS (polystyrene).

UK-based non-profit group WRAP (Waste & Resources Action Programme), reported that near-infrared systems can also effectively remove polylactic acid (PLA)-based bioplastic and carton board from a mixed packaging stream.

I do wonder how much those systems will cost plastic recyclers? Still, it seems to be a good investment as bioplastic production is increasing year over year.

For the past year, NatureWorks was able to incorporate its bioplastic product Ingeo in several branded bottled water products such from North Carolina-based Primo Water, New Zealand-based GoodWater, and Italy-based Fonti di Vinadio for its line of mineral water.

2 Responses to Recycling not a problem for bioplastics

  1. Mario Vellandi 23 February, 2009 at 3:39 pm #

    I saw that article earlier today, and thought Cool! Great to see advancements in the field so that we can reuse biobased materials so consumers never have to even think in which bin to put it, or the dreaded scenario of contaminated plastic batches.
    But like you said, the bigger question is technology implementation costs at waste management and MRFs. Tech is great, but in this field, it’s aggregate established infrastructure that makes the difference.
    Twitter: @mvellandi

  2. Thanate tan 26 February, 2009 at 11:29 am #

    I think the recycle bottle are good for today, but if we can develope with Bioplastic & Biodegradable for daily bottle it will help our earth more.

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