LyondellBasell, AFA Nord Partner for Recycling Flexible Packaging Waste

recycling symbol made of plastic straws and waste

(Credit: Canva Pro)

by | Jun 19, 2023

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Chemical and plastics company LyondellBasell has partnered with AFA Nord, a renowned agricultural film recycler, to recycle flexible packaging waste. The companies’ partnership form a 50-50 joint venture named LMF Nord GmbH, and the primary objective of this collaboration is to recycle post-commercial flexible secondary packaging waste. 

With plans to construct a mechanical recycling plant in northern Germany, the joint venture aims to convert linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE) and low-density Polyethylene (LDPE) waste into high-quality recycled plastic materials suitable for use in flexible packaging applications. The start of production is anticipated in early 2025.

LyondellBasell’s Commitment to Advanced Recycling

Secondary plastic packaging, such as stretch or shrink film, plays a vital role in securing consumer goods during transportation and storage, safeguarding them from contamination and damage. However, until now, recycling this type of material into high-quality raw materials that meet the packaging industry’s stringent requirements for strength and transparency has proven challenging.

Yvonne van der Laan, LyondellBasell’s executive vice president of Circular and Low Carbon Solutions, emphasized that the collaboration will offer recycled LDPE and LLDPE materials, which will complement LyondellBasell’s existing CirculenRecover product range comprising high-density polyethylene and polypropylene. 

The newly established recycling unit is projected to have an annual production capacity of 26,000 tons of recycled LDPE and LLDPE grades. LyondellBasell plans to market these recycled materials through its CirculenRecover family of products, catering to a wide range of applications, including stretch films, collation shrink films, electrical appliances, washing detergent bottles, and suitcases. The CirculenRecover product line comprises a diverse portfolio of mechanically recycled materials that are already in use across various industries.

Collaboration with TM Recycling

To ensure a consistent supply of feedstock for LMF Nord, TM Recycling, a sister company of AFA Nord, will be responsible for providing the necessary raw materials. TM Recycling, which is part of the Mensing Group, brings substantial experience in the production of recycled materials. This collaboration between LyondellBasell and AFA Nord represents a significant step toward contributing to a circular economy and increasing the availability of sustainable solutions for flexible packaging applications.

The partnership between LyondellBasell and AFA Nord in establishing the joint venture LMF Nord GmbH aims to transform LDPE and LLDPE waste into high-quality recycled plastics, offering an environmentally friendly alternative for various packaging applications. 

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