PET products can be made of high-quality 100% recycled plastics
TOMRA's e-book begins by busting the misconception that PET packaging and products other than bottles can only be downcycled into inferior-quality products. In fact, PET bottle recycling has progressed immensely. It is possible to manufacture other PET products, PET trays in particular, from 100% recycled materials, which makes sense environmentally and commercially.
Technological progress toward 100% recyclability continues
The e-book highlights the progress being made toward 100% recyclability with technologies such as the SHARP EYE and Laser Object Detection (LOD) systems recently introduced by TOMRA.
SHARP EYE uses the best sensor technology on the market, TOMRA's FLYING BEAM® technology, to distinguish the small chemical differences between PET trays and bottles, so they can be separated for equivalent-product recycling. Combined with TOMRA's AUTOSORT machine, the SHARP EYE breakthrough technology makes it possible to seamlessly separate even single-layer PET trays from PET bottles.
Laser Object Detection is able to detect material that near infra-red (NIR) technology is incapable of identifying, enabling recycling systems to remove impurities and decontamination efficiently. As a result, it is technically possible and economically advantageous to produce goods from 100% recycled materials. Used in combination with TOMRA's AUTOSORT and FINDER machines, LOD enables waste and scrap recycling operations to reach final product purity levels not previously attainable.
Addressing the resource crisis
Tom Eng, Senior Vice President and Head of TOMRA Sorting Recycling, commented: "Recycling is part of the solution to the world's worsening resource crisis. TOMRA's e-book highlights the environmental and economic importance of sorting technologies for the significant role they can play in improving recycling rates. To complement this, product designers and manufacturers are now beginning to think more carefully about their products' end-of-life recyclability. Consumers now think about, and our natural environment urgently needs, this. It is together that we can really make a difference."