Injection molding technology – Covestro has unveiled its latest achievement: a cutting-edge production facility for polycarbonate copolymers at its Antwerp site in Belgium 30-03-2024

Injection molding technology

EU PET recycling progress advances, yet disparities hinder circularity goals. More effort required for 2025 targets

The journey towards circularity for PET faces challenges due to disparities, impeding progress despite reaching a 24% recycled content rate for EU beverage bottles. While strides were made in 2022, achieving the 2025 EU targets demands further efforts.

PET collection and recycling surged in anticipation of the new EU Single-Use Plastic Directive. Collection rates rose to 60% in 2022, up from 45% in 2020, with PET beverage bottle sorting for recycling hitting 75%. Expansion of deposit-return systems across 12 EU countries contributed to this growth, with nine more set to follow suit.

Nearly 2.7 million tonnes of PET waste were sorted for recycling in 2022, with a total recycling capacity of 3 million tonnes, 1.4 million tonnes earmarked for food contact applications. Packaging, notably bottles, dominated rPET end-uses, showcasing a positive shift towards bottle-to-bottle recycling.  Injection molding technology

Addressing inter-country disparities is crucial to sustain progress. Without further investment, some nations may miss 2025 targets. Tailored actions per Member State are necessary to enhance waste collection, recycling infrastructure, and compliance with targets. Implementation of the SUPD and increased investment in waste management and recycling sectors are pivotal to uphold the EU industry’s competitiveness.



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US plastics recovery dips in 2022

In 2022, the United States witnessed a slight dip in plastics recovery, with a decrease of 1.4 percent compared to 2021, amounting to 5 billion pounds of postconsumer plastics recovered for recycling. Despite this decline, 93.7 percent of the recycled plastic was processed within North America, marking a significant localization of recycling efforts. The majority of plastics collected remained on the continent for processing, with only 6.3 percent exported overseas, a significant shift from 2013 when 30.6 percent of collected plastics were exported.  Injection molding technology

Bottles constituted the largest portion of the recovered plastics at 55.5 percent, followed by nonbottle rigids at 22.2 percent, film at 22.1 percent, and “other plastics” at 0.2 percent. Notably, PET bottles exhibited the highest recycling rate within North America at 96.5 percent. However, overall bottle recycling rates experienced a slight decline from the previous year.

Despite challenges such as inflation impacting consumer goods markets and manufacturing, the increase in processing by U.S. reclaimers is a positive indicator. There’s a call for enhanced collection programs to meet the capacity of recyclers, alongside the necessity for policy interventions to bolster demand for recycled materials.

Transparent reporting is emphasized as crucial for gauging progress and fostering a circular economy for plastics, reinforcing the commitment of stakeholders toward sustainable practices.  Injection molding technology

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MEGlobal announces ACP for April 2024

MEGlobal has disclosed its Asian Contract Price (ACP) for monoethylene glycol (MEG), set at USD 840 per tonne CFR Asian main ports for April 2024 arrivals. This adjustment reflects the current dynamics of supply and demand within the Asian market.

The pricing structure is based on CFR (Cost & Freight) terms specific to Asia. Notably, the ACP for March 2024 stood at USD 850 per tonne CFR Asian main ports, indicating a slight decline in the latest announcement.

This adjustment underscores MEGlobal’s response to evolving market conditions, striving to maintain competitive pricing while considering the prevailing supply and demand dynamics.  Injection molding technology

The Asian MEG market remains influenced by various factors, including raw material availability, regional demand fluctuations, and global economic trends. MEGlobal’s regular ACP announcements serve as a barometer for market participants, providing insights into price trends and market sentiment.

As stakeholders navigate through these dynamics, MEGlobal’s transparent pricing mechanism offers clarity and facilitates informed decision-making within the industry.

Injection molding technology

Krones has successfully finalized the acquisition of Netstal Maschinen AG, a renowned injection molding technology company based in Näfels, Switzerland

The acquisition, announced on February 7, 2024, and subject to regulatory approval, has now been approved without conditions. Netstal will be integrated into Krones’ Filling and Packaging Technology segment starting March 28, 2024. With over €200 million in revenue and approximately 560 employees in 2023, Netstal will enhance Krones’ offerings despite its current lower profitability compared to the Krones Group.

This acquisition marks a significant strategic move for Krones, aligning with its focus on providing comprehensive solutions for the beverage market, particularly in PET preforms and closures.  Injection molding technology

With Netstal onboard, Krones gains access to additional innovative products and technologies, completing its portfolio for circular PET solutions—from preform injection molding to bottle production, filling, packaging, and bottle recycling.

Moreover, Netstal’s expertise in injection molding for medical applications and thin-wall packaging supports Krones’ diversification strategy into the medical/pharmaceutical, food, and body care sectors.

Netstal will maintain autonomy in managing its business while leveraging the international presence and economies of scale offered by the Krones Group. Strategic measures will be implemented to enhance Netstal’s profitability, bringing it in line with the Krones Group’s standards over the medium term.  Injection molding technology

Krones has successfully finalized the acquisition of Netstal Maschinen AG, a renowned injection molding technology company based in Näfels, Switzerland

FDA Clears Borealis’ Borcycle™ M Recycled Plastics for Food-Grade Packaging

Borealis has received two Letters of No Objection (LNOs) from the US Food & Drug Administration (FDA), permitting the use of its Borcycle™ M post-consumer recycled plastics in food-grade packaging under FDA governance. This regulatory milestone aligns with Borealis’ commitment to meeting the rising demand for premium recycled materials suitable for demanding applications.

The approval signifies a significant advancement in Borealis’ EverMinds™ initiative, aimed at fostering circularity in plastics.

Borcycle M, Borealis’ innovative mechanical recycling technology, rejuvenates post-consumer plastic waste in an eco-friendly manner. The FDA’s LNOs open avenues for Borcycle M-derived materials to serve various sensitive applications, including food contact, cosmetics, and personal care.  Injection molding technology

Issued for Borcycle M PCR high-density polyethylene (HDPE) and polypropylene (PP), the LNOs authorize their use in dry food contact applications up to 100%, with allowances for up to 10% in packaging for products with surface oil and moist bakery items. Effective from January 2024 for HDPE and February 2024 for PP, these clearances underscore Borealis’ dedication to advancing plastics circularity.

The FDA’s endorsement empowers Borealis to fulfill market demands for premium recycled materials, reducing reliance on virgin resources and diverting plastic waste from incineration and landfills. Jonatas Melo, Borealis Vice President for Performance Materials, anticipates expanded opportunities for customers to integrate recycled plastics into their portfolios, aligning with sustainability objectives.  Injection molding technology

With this regulatory approval, Borealis embarks on developing food packaging applications using recycled HDPE and PP, a significant stride towards sustainable living. Mirjam Mayer, Borealis Vice President Circular Economy Solutions, underscores the global impact of FDA clearance, facilitating discussions in regions under FDA governance, such as the EU, on utilizing these materials in high-value applications like cosmetics and personal care packaging.

Injection molding technology

TOPPAN to Launch Indian Production of BOPP-based GL-SP Barrier Film for Sustainable Packaging

TOPPAN Inc. announces the launch of Indian production for BOPP-based GL-SP Barrier Film, enhancing competitiveness through end-to-end production of base and barrier films. GL-SP applies a transparent barrier to BOPP substrate, meeting mono-material packaging demands.

Developed by TOPPAN and its India-based subsidiary, TOPPAN Speciality Films Private Limited (TSF), GL-SP utilizes BOPP as the substrate. It joins TOPPAN Group’s GL BARRIER series, renowned for transparent vapor-deposited barrier films. Sales of GL-SP targeting dry content packaging markets in the Americas, Europe, India, and ASEAN will commence from April.  Injection molding technology

Notably, GL-SP represents TOPPAN’s first product where both BOPP film manufacturing and barrier film production occur at a single site, ensuring consistent quality control and reducing development timelines, lead times, and costs.

BOPP, in high demand for sustainable packaging, serves as the base film for GL-SP. Its attributes, including superior oxygen and water vapor barrier properties, transparency, and thinness, address diverse market needs, particularly for dry content packaging, while contributing to plastic reduction efforts.  Injection molding technology

TOPPAN to Launch Indian Production of BOPP-based GL-SP Barrier Film for Sustainable Packaging

Covestro has unveiled its latest achievement: a cutting-edge production facility for polycarbonate copolymers at its Antwerp site in Belgium

This marks the fifth polycarbonate production line at the location and introduces a groundbreaking solvent-free melt process for a diverse range of copolymers. This pioneering technology allows for the rapid development and market launch of customizable copolymers, catering to various industries such as electrical/electronics and healthcare.

The innovative platform, developed in-house by Covestro, combines a solvent-free melt process with a novel reactor concept, enabling the production of polycarbonates with adjustable properties. This investment, totaling in the mid double-digit million euro range, encompasses both pilot and production facilities.

The streamlined production process not only reduces complexity but also seamlessly integrates with Antwerp’s existing infrastructure, leveraging four existing polycarbonate production lines. Such integration combines global production scale with the agility of a standalone unit.  Injection molding technology

According to Sucheta Govil, Chief Commercial Officer at Covestro, this breakthrough in production enables the company to swiftly introduce a broad portfolio of material innovations to the market. Lily Wang, Global Head of the Engineering Plastics business unit, emphasizes the potential of copolymers to enhance material functionalities, catering to evolving customer demands.

Covestro will showcase these innovative material solutions at the upcoming Chinaplas exhibition in Shanghai, seeking to engage with customers and understand their evolving needs. This new production facility exemplifies Covestro’s commitment to innovation and customer-centricity, positioning them at the forefront of material science advancement.

Covestro has unveiled its latest achievement: a cutting-edge production facility for polycarbonate copolymers at its Antwerp site in Belgium

Post-consumer packaging – The demand for recyclable packaging is on the rise globally, particularly in developed nations 29-03-2024

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