Recyclate Initiative: PackTheFuture Award for Sustainable Design
During the Interpack fair in Düsseldorf, the Werner & Mertz Recyclate Initiative, implemented by the plastic packaging manufacturer ALPLA, received the PackTheFuture Award in the Ecodesign category. Michael Wiener, CEO of the Green Dot, presented the prize to representatives of Werner & Mertz and ALPLA for the development of the world's first plastic bottle made of 100% HDPE recyclates from the Yellow Bag at the get-together of the German industry association IK (Industrievereinigung Kunststoffverpackungen).
"The winners in the Ecodesign category show how ecological and economic goals can be pursued together. They prove that we can take great leaps forward when we manage to get all participants in the supply chain at the same table to work out joint solutions," said Weiner at the awards ceremony.
Werner Schulze, managing director of tana-Chemie GmbH, and Immo Sander, head of Packaging Development at Werner & Mertz, accepted the award along with Corporate Innovation Manager Daniella Dittmar, Global Sales Director Nonfood Alexander Draxler, Production Manager in Mainz Holger Felix, and Plant Manager Edwin Lucas of ALPLA-Werke Alwin Lehner GmbH & Co KG.
"We are proud that we have jointly created an innovation that adds to customer value and contributes to sustainability and resource protection," said Draxler about the successful cooperation and development realized by the technical team. "Special thanks go to our customer Werner & Mertz, which promotes true recycling and protects finite resources with the Recyclate Initiative."
"Thanks to the successful collaboration with ALPLA and the Green Dot, we were able to boost high-quality recycled packaging and effective plastic recycling through the Recyclate Initiative. The PackTheFuture Award confirms that with our joint engagement we are heading in the right direction," said Schulze. Sander too celebrated still another success of the open innovation project. "We are very pleased that we could expand our know-how platform with the HDPE recyclate bottle. In the future we will develop other sustainability innovations and share them over our extensive network."
About the development
In cooperation with the bottle manufacturer ALPLA and the Green Dot, Werner & Mertz developed a new kind of bottle for cleaning products which is made of 100% recycled plastic from the Yellow Bag. Since September 2016, the innovative bottles have been produced from 100% PE recyclates from the Yellow Bag at the Werner & Mertz GmbH factory in Mainz for emsal hardwood floor care and green care PROFESSIONAL TANET SR 15. Eventually, all PE packaging for Werner & Mertz brands will be manufactured with the new quality.
The remarkable thing is that up to now no translucent and white material has ever been produced from recyclable domestic refuse. Conventional PE recyclates do not have those qualities. The objective was to produce a translucent material that would allow the consumer to see the product's fill-level. An optimized washing process and the integrated decontamination step are additional developments in the manufacture of high-quality PE packaging from recyclates. With this development, the Recyclate Initiative has achieved its goal of eliminating dyes in packaging for the benefit of true recycling and recyclability.
On the way to even better packaging recyclability, the Recyclate Initiative currently is at work in other projects. In the future the closures for Frosch products also will be made of 100% PP recyclate obtained from the Yellow Bag. The development of sustainable printing inks is also a goal of the award-winning Initiative.
This year's PackTheFuture Award recognized 10 innovative products in four categories.
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