Australia’s newest and largest PET plastic recycling plant has won a sustainability excellence award for creating a game-changing, closed loop operation which will have the capacity to recycle about 1 billion 600ml PET beverage bottles a year.
Coca-Cola Europacific Partners Australia, together with Pact Group, Cleanaway Waste Management Ltd and Asahi Beverages, is part of a joint venture partnership known as Circular Plastics Australia (PET).
Circular Plastics Australia's first facility, located in Albury-Wodonga, commenced operations in March this year to produce high-quality recycled PET resin from beverage bottles collected through container deposit schemes and household recycling bins.
The plant helps to keep thousands of tonnes of plastic waste out of landfill and means our beverage bottles and food packaging are being recycled and manufactured in Australia without the need to export plastic waste or import plastic material from overseas.
This month, the facility received the Australian Packaging and Processing Machinery Association (APPMA) Sustainability Excellence Award, which recognises organisations showing leadership and commitment to environmentally sustainable business practices, through innovative solutions for new and existing market needs.
Cleanaway provides the plastic to be recycled through its collection and sorting network, Pact Group operates the facility and provides technical and packaging expertise, while Asahi Beverages, CCEP and Pact Group will buy the recycled plastic from the facility to use in their packaging.
Pact Group Managing Director and CEO Sanjay Dayal shared his thoughts on the award win on behalf of Circular Plastics Australia (PET).
He said: “We are delighted that this world-class recycling facility has been recognised for creating a closed loop for beverage bottles where they are used, collected, recycled and given another life. It’s a demonstration of how industry and governments can work hand in hand to protect our environment and lead the circular economy in Australia”.
The Circular Plastics Australia (PET) Albury-Wodonga facility was supported by a $5 million grant through the NSW Government’s Waste Less, Recycle More initiative, with the support of the Australian Government’s Recycling Modernisation Fund.
The joint venture is building a second PET plastic recycling facility in Melbourne’s west which is scheduled to be operational in 2023. Combined, the two sites will have the capacity to recycle the equivalent of around 2 billion PET beverage bottles each year.