Tests prove effective sorting of Mondi mono-material polypropylene pouches
Mondi has carried out a series of tests to prove its mono-material polypropylene (PP) pouches and roll stock material can be sorted into their appropriate recycling streams.
Implemented in collaboration with the National Test Centre Circular Plastics (NTCP) in the Netherlands, these tests, simulating realistic packaging waste management conditions, were designed to determine the sortability of Mondi's recyclable mono PP packaging. Using technical set-ups, the tests were carried out on pre-made retort and standard pouches, spouted pouches, and top web and thermoformed semi-rigid tray material. These are made from mono PP-material and used for applications that require high barrier protection, such as wet pet food or processed meat.
Replicating real-life scenarios, the tests prove that Mondi's top web and thermoformed semi-rigid trays are successfully sorted into the correct recycling stream. Mondi's pre-made pouches were also detected accurately, setting the standard for sorting streams which still need to be developed throughout Europe, supporting high-quality input for plastic recycling processes.
"To achieve the plastic recycling targets defined in the revised PPWD, the sorting and recycling of plastic waste must be significantly improved," says Thomas Kahl, channel manager FMCG and industrial at Mondi Flexible Packaging. "As a market leader we are strongly committed to contribute to this target by testing the sorting performance for our packaging. The outcome of the tests show that our mono-material polypropylene packaging is recognized and categorized into the correct sorting stream in advanced waste management facilities. We are particularly proud that we also succeeded for demanding applications such as retort wet pet food pouches."
The tests are part of Mondi's MAP2030 sustainability commitments to deliver circular packaging and paper solutions, keep materials in circulation, and prevent waste. Mondi has pledged to make all of its packaging and paper solutions reusable, recyclable, or compostable by 2025, working closely with cross-value chain collaborations like CEFLEX and 4evergreen, to eliminate unsustainable packaging and develop designs for recycling or circularity guidelines.
"We conduct independent tests and experiments that contribute to closing the plastics cycle," says Marcel van Eijk, R&D manager at NTCP. "By replicating real-life situations for Mondi, we were able to thoroughly assess the sortability of its packaging products. We could prove that top-web and tray combinations can be recognized in different sorting streams and Mondi's stand-up pouches support sorting strategies that need to be developed and implemented at larger scale."