Blue Plastics - a Dutch innovation for recycling flexible plastics
Blue Plastics technology, called CleanBlueTech (CBT), is a pioneering, solvent-based, closed-loop washing technology that removes smell, glue, print-ink and organic residues from any plastic flexible film waste. This includes household, warehouse, supermarket and post-consumer stream waste.
CBT is a game changer as it uses 70% less energy and 100% less water than existing technologies. Flexible film plastic is one of the hardest types of plastic to recycle, and only 17% finds its way back into (lower quality) film applications.
CBT makes transport packaging circular and so reduces the CO2 footprint for plastic use. This technology solves several problems:
- The flakes are odourless, something that cannot be achieved when washing with water.
- CBT washes at lower temperatures without water, with a consequent 70% decrease in energy consumption. The process is faster and more effective, and the overall footprint is lower than for current mechanical washing methods.
- The biodegradable solvent is fully recycled and no emissions are released. The only residue is the washed-off remains of glue, ink etc. from the original film and the clean, odourless flakes.
This innovation technology provides an opportunity to reuse all kinds of plastic packaging material which is currently only used once. Blue Plastics is ready to upscale its technology with new industrial plants with its partner TCR Plastics by 2024.
- Using an eco-friendly and efficient recycling process, Blue Plastics will produce near virgin quality polyethylene (PE) granulate by recycling used plastic films from different industries.
- The end-product is a clean and odour-free granulate, close to virgin material. It is suitable for the production of non-food plastic products for the agricultural, transport and packaging industries, with very little to no addition of virgin material.
- Blue Plastics' industrial plant for recycling PE films will be ready by 2024.