Unilever brings out New Technology to Recycle Plastic Sachet Waste

SachetUnilever brings out its ground-breaking new technology called CreaSolv Process to recycle sachet waste. The CreaSolv Process technology, developed in collaboration with the Fraunhofer Institute for Process Engineering and Packaging IVV in Germany will turn sachets into plastic and channeled back into the supply chain–creating a full circular economy approach.

David Blanchard, Chief R&D Officer, Unilever, commented, “Billions of sachets are used once and just thrown away, all over the world, ending up in landfill or in our waterways and oceans. We intend to make this tech open source and would hope to scale the technology with industry partners, so others – including our competitors – can use it.” “There is a clear economic case for delivering this. We know that globally $80-120 bn is lost to the economy through failing to properly recycle plastics each year. Finding a solution represents a huge opportunity.”

Unilever has pledged to make 100% of packaging recyclable, reusable or compostable by 2025. Unilever will open a pilot plant in Indonesia later this year to test the long-term commercial viability of the technology.

“With this innovative pilot plant, we can recycle high-value polymers from dirty, post-consumer, multi-layer sachets. Our aim is to prove the economic profitability and environmental benefits of the CreaSolv Process. Our calculations indicate to recover six kilos of pure polymers with the same energy effort as the production of one kilo of virgin polymer”, said Dr. Andreas Mäurer, Department Head of Plastic Recycling at the Fraunhofer IVV.

Unilever will reduce the weight of its packaging by one-third by 2020 and increase the use of recycled plastic content in its packaging to at least 25% by 2025. Unilever will continue its work with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s New Plastics Economy initiative looking for additional solutions.

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