Close The Loop - Manupackaging's New German Sustainability Initiative
31 July 2023
** Translated press release from Manupackaging Deutschland; issued 25 July 2023 **
Close-the-Loop System for Tertiary Packaging from Plastic Stretch Film: Manupackaging Inspires Companies to Recycle
To make packaging processes more sustainable, Manupackaging, a film specialist based in the Value Park in Schkopau, has established a close-the-loop system for plastic stretch film used to secure pallet transport. With a partner program, the company encourages the collection, compaction, and return of used transport films, so that Manupackaging can recycle them into new stretch film. The circular system allows for savings of 30 to 60 percent in new plastic material.
Plastic stretch film is used for transporting goods on pallets. It is necessary to stabilize loads securely during transport and ensure maximum safety for people and products. However, the resulting packaging waste is significant. Manupackaging, as a manufacturer of transport films, is a pioneer in sustainability, as CEO Massimo Moroni explains: "We produce specially developed films with a recycling component, which can save 30 to 60 percent of new plastic material. The recycling portion contains up to 60 percent, of which 30 percent is internal recyclate (from waste from our own production) and 30 percent is external material, which customers return to us."
Partner Program for a Real Circular Economy
With the partner program, the company has now launched a close-the-loop system to combat plastic waste in the field of tertiary packaging. Dr. Isabell Stolte, Head of Research, Development, and Innovation at the company, says: "We call on companies to collect used stretch film separately, compact it on-site, and send it back to us through recycling companies we commission. The film is tested, regranulated, and processed back into new stretch film with up to 60 percent recyclate. This establishes a real circular economy and significantly reduces packaging material." The project has already been successfully tested with customer companies.
The use of resources such as energy, water, and other raw materials is lower when using recyclate than when processing new plastic granules, resulting in significantly lower CO2 emissions.
Benefits for Companies using the Close-the-Loop System
Collecting companies enjoy numerous benefits:
- The return of the film is remunerated or rewarded with significant discounts for customer companies.
- Film returned does not have to be film produced by Manupackaging - the company can also include films from other manufacturers in its recycling process.
- Companies participating in the Close-The-Loop system improve their sustainability statistics in the packaging and transport sector, and show their commitment to the environment.
- Saving on storage space - compressing the stretch film significantly increases available storage space, which is usually scarce.
- Disposal costs for film waste are also reduced.
- With films that contain at least 30 percent recyclate, plastic taxes can be avoided, which is already levied in some European countries such as England and Spain.
- The necessary compaction machines can be leased or purchased cost-effectively from Manupackaging with a volume contract.
As stretch film loses elasticity and stability through the recycling process, it is not indefinitely reusable. A s it stands, used stretch film can be reintroduced into the cycle several times and processed into recycled stretch film. With the mentioned recyclate percentages, even film qualities in the category of Super-Power film are possible.