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How To Make Money From Recycling Plastic Waste

At two plants in Hong Kong and Indonesia, PET bottles usually used for soft drinks are given a new lease of life. PET is a fully recyclable plastic that is also clear and lightweight, and it is recycled into food grade plastics that are then used to create new drink bottles. This process is known as bottle-to-bottle recycling, but the complexity lies in the fact that the plastic must be food grade, so it must be safe for people to drink from, as well as being durable and aesthetically pleasing.

The global recycled plastics market is expected to grow at 6% a year for the next decade, larger than the growth of the plastics market overall. However, one obstacle to reaching this market potential is the collection and sorting process. There are many different types of plastic, and it is difficult for the public or even those collecting the plastic to identify and separate them. For example, water bottles are generally PET, but shampoo bottles are made from HDPE, and then there are films and other materials. As these are all different chemicals, they can react against each other.

Despite this, Alba has found ways to make plastic recycling profitable by tailoring its process to the end use. Watch the video for details.

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