Red Sea Crisis – Oonly Opens Bottling Plant With Revolutionary RefPET Tech 25-01-2024

Red Sea Crisis

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Ioniqa Technologies B.V. is thrilled to announce a significant growth investment from Infinity Recycling’s Circular Plastics Fund, further propelling the advancement and global deployment of its groundbreaking PET Polyester recycling technology

This strategic funding will play a pivotal role in expediting Ioniqa’s scale-up efforts.

At the core of Ioniqa’s innovation is a technology that transforms low-grade post-consumer plastic waste into a feedstock of virgin-like quality. Uniquely, this process includes the upcycling of colored plastic waste flakes, addressing the challenge of recycling currently non-recyclable PET waste. The result is a recycled material suitable for high-quality food-grade applications, unlocking new possibilities for sustainable packaging solutions.

Ioniqa has successfully demonstrated its technology in an industrial production facility in The Netherlands and is now poised to bring it to market through a strategic partnership with Koch Technology Solutions. This collaboration strategically positions Ioniqa to contribute significantly to the circular economy for plastics.

Infinity Recycling’s Circular Plastics Fund, known for providing growth capital to companies fostering circularity, recognizes Ioniqa’s enhanced recycling solution as a game-changer. By complementing existing recycling technologies with a cost-efficient approach, Ioniqa is poised to catalyze the industry’s scale-up.

Tonnis Hooghoudt, Founder and CEO of Ioniqa, expressed gratitude for the funding, emphasizing the critical role it plays in propelling the company’s mission forward. With this investment, Ioniqa is not only set to launch industrial licenses for new customer plants globally but also expand its feedstock capabilities to include Polyester fibers.

This strategic partnership between Ioniqa and Infinity Recycling marks a significant step towards a more sustainable and circular future for PET Polyester recycling, reinforcing Ioniqa’s position as a key player in the evolution of the recycling industry.

Ioniqa Technologies B.V. is thrilled to announce a significant growth investment from Infinity Recycling's Circular Plastics Fund, further propelling the advancement and global deployment of its groundbreaking PET Polyester recycling technology

In response to the escalating threat posed by Houthi rebels, the United States has undertaken a significant shift in its strategy, opting for proactive measures to counter potential attacks

This strategic realignment materialized on January 18, following a Houthi assault involving the launch of two anti-ship ballistic missiles at a US-owned and Greek-operated oil tanker. Prior to this event, Washington, in collaboration with British forces, had refrained from initiating offensive actions against the rebels. The change in approach marks a pivotal moment as the US military, for the first time, actively engaged in preemptive strikes against Houthi anti-ship missiles aimed at the southern Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, crucial maritime routes for global shipping.

The Pentagon justified its actions by citing the missiles’ threat to merchant and Navy ships in the region, characterizing the strikes as acts of self-defense. Major General Pat Ryder, the Pentagon’s press secretary, revealed that the United States has conducted at least four cycles of preemptive strikes, targeting over 25 missile launch and deployment facilities, more than 20 missiles, as well as drones, radars, weapons, and aerial surveillance capabilities. These efforts, according to Ryder, have been effective in ensuring the safety of international waters off Yemen, emphasizing that the primary objective is to secure the Red Sea for global shipping and mariners. Red Sea Crisis

Acknowledging the Houthi rebels’ formidable arsenal, supplied by Iran, Ryder noted that despite the destruction inflicted, the rebels still retain some of their capabilities. Pentagon officials estimate that the insurgents maintain the majority of their ability to launch missiles and drones at ships. The ongoing efforts underscore a commitment to safeguarding the Red Sea and maintaining a secure environment for international maritime activities, aligning with General Ryder’s assertion that this is the sole goal of the United States in the region.

In response to the escalating threat posed by Houthi rebels, the United States has undertaken a significant shift in its strategy, opting for proactive measures to counter potential attacks

The Houthis fire missiles at ships in the Red Sea

In the latest escalation of violence, Yemen’s Iran-backed Houthi rebels targeted two merchant ships in the Red Sea with three missiles, according to a statement from the White House. Despite ongoing US and British raids on Houthi bases, the group remains committed to its attacks. One missile missed its target, while a US Navy destroyer successfully intercepted the other two rockets aimed at the U.S.-flagged container ship M/V Maersk Detroit. The Houthis’ continued offensive poses a threat to shipping in the region, prompting the need for protective measures. Red Sea Crisis

Denmark’s Maersk, a major shipping company, confirmed that two of its ships, including the Maersk Detroit, had turned back after hearing explosions while passing through the Bab Al-Mandeb Strait. The US Navy escorting the vessels intercepted several projectiles, ensuring the safety of the crew, vessel, and cargo. The United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations reported an explosion near a vessel south of the Yemeni port of Mokha, supporting Maersk’s accounts. The Houthi attacks since mid-November have disrupted Red Sea trade, a vital route for approximately 12% of international shipping traffic between Europe and Asia.

Houthi rebels claim their attacks target Israel-linked ships supporting Palestinians in Gaza, affected by the Hamas-Israel conflict. The ongoing situation underscores the challenges in maintaining maritime security in the region, with global implications for trade and geopolitical tensions. Red Sea Crisis

The Houthis fire missiles at ships in the Red Sea

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Oonly Opens Bottling Plant With Revolutionary RefPET Tech

OonlyTisztán Víz has opened a HUF 1.5 billion bottling plant in Pannonhalma, where Hungary’s first refPET replacement bottles of mineral water rolled off the production line in mid-January.

Oonly replacement bottles can be refilled an average of 25 times before being recycled and remanufactured into refPET bottles. With this solution, the life cycle of a bottle is much longer than that of a single-use PET bottle. A single replacement bottle guarantees the consumption of 37.5 liters of water over 25 refill cycles, using some 80% less plastic over its entire life cycle than a single-use PET bottle.

“Nearly 100% of household water consumption in Hungary is with single-use PET bottles. However, our research confirms that there is significant consumer demand for future-conscious solutions that take into account our environment.  Red Sea Crisis

Oonly is the first company in our country to offer refillable natural mineral water in a suitable packaging for households. We would like to see environmentally responsible mineral water consumption spread in our country, as in other European countries. Excellent water in sustainable replacement bottles – that’s what we believe in. Packaging waste should be minimized and bottle washing and refilling is the best way to do this. To achieve breakthrough waste reduction success and reduce our carbon footprint, we need truly green solutions that have been proven to work internationally,” said István Polony, managing director of Oonly.

Oonly’s refillable exchangeable bottles are a good alternative for consumers who want to actively protect their environment but don’t want to give up natural mineral water and its benefits.

The source of the spring in Pannonhalma provides crystal clear water with excellent mineral content, the company says.

“In Hungary, more than half of the 3.3 billion beverage containers packaged each year are plastic bottles, so there is huge potential in refillable bottles, so-called refPET, which offer a sustainable solution. Nowadays, there is also a growing interest in sustainable, green products in Hungary, and hopefully, the use of refillable bottles will gain ground,” said Csongor Bajnóczki, senior sustainability consultant at Denkstatt.

Oonly’s products have been available in 1.5 liter, non-carbonated, and carbonated versions since January 22 at Red Sea Crisis

Reviving the Recycling Traditions

A new mandatory return system was introduced in Hungary on January 1, which means that shops charge a deposit on glass, aluminum, and PET bottles, which is returned to the customer when they take the bottles to a return point.

Red Sea Crisis

China tire cord maker Shenma to establish Thai factory

China’s leading tire cord manufacturer, Shenma Co., Ltd, is embarking on a strategic international expansion with a significant investment of €32 million to establish a state-of-the-art polyamide fiber production facility in Thailand. The new facility will be situated in the Eastern Economic Corridor industrial zone, strategically located in Rayong, Chonburi.

This ambitious project will be executed in two phases, with an overall production capacity of 20 kilotonnes per annum (ktpa) focusing on the production of ‘differentiated fiber’ specifically designed for tire manufacturing.  Red Sea Crisis

Shenma disclosed this information in a stock exchange filing on January 18, highlighting the first phase’s completion expected within 15 months. The initial phase will have a nameplate capacity to produce 10ktpa of high-quality nylon yarn.

Shenma’s decision to invest in this facility is grounded in its comprehensive internationalization strategy, responding proactively to the growing trend of Chinese tire manufacturers establishing overseas bases. By setting up operations in the Eastern Economic Corridor, Shenma aims to strengthen its proximity to downstream customers in Southeast Asia, resulting in reduced sales costs, improved product profitability, and swift responsiveness to the demands of the downstream market.

Additionally, Shenma eyes further market expansion by leveraging its Thai base to export products to other key Asian markets, with a specific focus on India. This move not only solidifies Shenma’s global presence but also aligns with the company’s commitment to staying ahead in the highly competitive tire cord industry. The establishment of the Thai facility marks a significant milestone in Shenma’s pursuit of international growth and market leadership.

Red Sea Crisis

Red Sea Issue Complicate Global PET Market, Another Series of Struggle Starts for the West and US

Global Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) market has been facing challenges since the start of January 2024 due to the high production cost and logistic barrier amid heightened demand. Overall markets around the globe including Europe and USA struggle with the recent price upswing.  Red Sea Crisis

The US PET market has been experiencing a continuous rise in prices since the start of the 2024. PET (bottle grade) prices, which were assessed at USD 1215/MT DDP Los Angeles during the first week of January 2024, later reached USD 1245/MT by third week of the month.

This rise in the PET resin price is primarily attributed to the ongoing conflict in the red sea trade route, which has resulted in low supply of commodities including raw materials and high production cost amid moderate demand in the downstream bottle and the packaging industries. Further, conflict is still continued to the date by the Yemen based rebel group. However, the US and UK with allies are striving to uphold the condition, which might ease the ocean logistic operation through the Red Sea route. Red Sea Crisis

On the other hand, reduction in the water level in the Panama Canal is another obstacle in the export path, this is the worst drought in the central American region creating a turmoil in the shipment route developing container’s traffic blockage creating hesitation about the canal route amongst route users for the trade.

PET price in European countries has been maintaining a bullish trend since early January 2024. Price rapid from USD 1160/MT to USD 1200/MT FD Belgium in the month. During this period, market demand for PET was high from the consumer and downstream packaging industries but it has been noticing a huge restriction from the supply chain to fulfill the market and consumer requirement.

Red Sea Ocean dispute has disturbed the entire logistic operation causing a reduction in container movement and delay in reaching shipments to consumers amid high demand. The dispute has prompted altering the different routes for ships resulting in a surge in freight cost and reduction in the availability of required containers. The ongoing crisis will threaten the supply status as Europe mainly depend on Asian countries for more than 50% PET import.

In Asia, majority of the nations have been displaying a bearish market situation like China, Taiwan and South Korea except for India. The decline in prices of PET in these countries was primarily driven by halted exports to the European market, which has led the domestic inventories level to rise in recent weeks. The opening price of PET bottle grade of the month in China is USD 1127/MT FOB Wuhu whereas the current price is USD 1127/MT FOB Wuhu, China.  Red Sea Crisis


Red Sea Crisis

I am a dedicated and results-oriented Product Manager with a strong focus on innovation and efficiency

Currently, I lead the development and implementation of groundbreaking technologies at Sidel, a global leader in packaging solutions.

My latest achievement is the introduction of EvoFill PET, a revolutionary filler designed for water and still beverages.

EvoFill PET stands out with its compact design, offering enhanced hygiene and quality while contributing to sustainability efforts. The space-saving innovation handles high production speeds of up to 90,000 bottles per hour, boasting a footprint that is 15% smaller.  Red Sea Crisis

Its simplified configuration, with fewer transfer star wheels and a more compact front table and process unit, ensures ease of operation, maintenance, and cleaning, ultimately contributing to optimal hygiene and making it best-in-class.

As the water industry rapidly expands, especially in key markets like China, India, and Türkiye, EvoFill PET meets the growing demand with versatility. Its ergonomic design ensures consistent and repeatable performance for operators of all skill levels. The controlled environment for flowmeter contactless filling enhances product safety and quality, catering to the evolving preferences and needs of consumers.

The flexibility of EvoFill PET extends to its multiple configurations, seamlessly integrating with Sidel’s Combi and Super Combi complete systems. With format changeovers simplified in both manual and automatic modes, the filler adapts quickly to market demands.  Red Sea Crisis

Sustainability is at the core of EvoFill PET’s design, from reduced energy consumption through the integrated CIP system to the compact size that minimizes maintenance needs. These improvements result in lower operational costs, reduced downtime, and an extended lifespan, guaranteeing a lower total cost of ownership.

I am proud to be at the forefront of shaping the future of bottling technology, providing innovative solutions that not only meet industry demands but also contribute to a more sustainable and efficient future. Red Sea Crisis

Visit Sidel

I am a dedicated and results-oriented Product Manager with a strong focus on innovation and efficiency

To curb plastic pollution, industry and academia must unite

Collaboration is key to making plastic use greener as soon as possible. Our experience yields tips on how to set up industry–academic partnerships.

From the top of Mount Everest to the deepest ocean trench, pieces of plastic are found almost everywhere on Earth. Specks have even been found in human blood and breast milk. This pervasiveness is just one aspect of a global crisis that encompasses the entire life cycle of plastics.  Red Sea Crisis

More than 95% of plastics are currently manufactured using fossil fuels1. In 2019 alone, the carbon footprint from their production reached 1.8 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide, or 3.7% of global greenhouse-gas emissions — around twice as much as is generated by aviation2.

About half of the plastic produced is used only once3 and, in 2019, 353 million tonnes of plastic waste were generated (see Nature 616, 234–237; 2023). Only 9% of that waste was recycled, and 19% was incinerated2 — lowering air quality. The rest was disposed of in landfill sites (49%) or, worse, was mismanaged (22%)2: burnt in the open or discarded in the environment through littering or illegal dumping.  Red Sea Crisis

Preliminary studies suggest that plastic pollutants have the potential to disturb crucial Earth system processes (such as nutrient cycling in soils) and to affect local weather patterns by promoting cloud formation. They could even serve as a marker for a potential new geological era shaped by human activity — the Anthropocene epoch.

As demand for plastics continues to soar, with annual production expected2 to nearly triple from around 460 million tonnes in 2019 to about 1,230 million tonnes in 2060, researchers in academia and industry are searching for ways to reduce their environmental cost. However, these efforts are often incremental and siloed. Progress is too slow. Academic and industrial groups need to team up to solve the problems faster. Red Sea Crisis


To curb plastic pollution, industry and academia must unite

Amprius, a California-based company specializing in high-performance batteries, has achieved a significant milestone with its latest battery model, SiCore, boasting an impressive energy density of 400 Wh/kg

This achievement, attributed to the use of a proprietary silicon anode, positions Amprius at the forefront of battery technology, especially in the context of electric aviation.

SiCore has demonstrated remarkable durability, enduring up to 1,200 charge and discharge cycles without significant degradation. This breakthrough has attracted notable partnerships with industry giants such as Aalto/Airbus, AeroVironment, BAE Systems, Teledyne Flir, and collaboration with the U.S. army, solidifying Amprius’ presence in the aeronautical sector.  Red Sea Crisis

CEO Kang Sun highlighted the company’s success, emphasizing their expertise in lithium-ion cells with a silicon anode as the key factor behind SiCore’s exceptional energy density. The positive results obtained in laboratory tests were validated through independent testing, confirming the battery’s reliability in various electric mobility applications.

Having successfully concluded the testing phase, Amprius is gearing up for SiCore’s production, partnering with Berzelius to supply American markets, including the USA, Canada, and Mexico. Additionally, a new production facility in Colorado, set to be operational in 2025, will house the manufacturing lines for SiCore cells and the upcoming SiMaxx cells.

The latter is anticipated to achieve a remarkable density of 500 Wh/kg, boasting rapid recharge times, up to 80% in less than 6 minutes, and operational efficacy within a wide temperature range, from -30 to 55 degrees Celsius. Red Sea Crisis

Amprius’ advancements in battery technology, especially with SiCore and the promising SiMaxx cells, signal a significant leap forward in the electrification of aviation, with potential applications in electric planes and broader electric mobility solutions.

Amprius, a California-based company specializing in high-performance batteries, has achieved a significant milestone with its latest battery model, SiCore, boasting an impressive energy density of 400 Wh/kg

In response to the recent challenges faced by its stock market, China is gearing up for a financial revival by unleashing a massive support package

The impetus for this strategic move arises from the stark comparisons with global counterparts, notably the surging Nikkei in Japan and India’s ascent to become the world’s fourth-largest stock market, surpassing Hong Kong. The Hang Seng’s stagnation symbolizes China’s broader economic struggles, prompting an urgent call to action.

A resolute “counter-order, comrades” was issued mere days after Prime Minister Li Qiang’s cautious stance at Davos, signaling Beijing’s commitment.  Red Sea Crisis

Bloomberg reports reveal a formidable plan to mobilize 2 trillion yuan (approximately $280 billion) from offshore accounts of state-owned enterprises. This formidable financial injection aims to stabilize the stock market and instill confidence among investors.

However, skeptics argue that this financial lifeline may prove inadequate, representing a mere 2% of China’s GDP and sidestepping the root causes of structural challenges. The nation grapples with an aging population, reluctant consumer spending despite a deflationary cycle, and constrained foreign currency inflows due to global economic constraints.  Red Sea Crisis

China faces an uphill battle, exacerbated by recent stock market setbacks, with indices like CSI and HSI witnessing significant declines. The outflow of foreign capital, reaching 33 billion RMB in the first part of 2024, underscores international skepticism about China’s recovery prospects.

Despite the formidable challenges, recent Bloomberg rumors triggered positive market reactions, with international investors purchasing 3.8 billion yuan of Chinese shares and the Hong Kong stock market gaining 3%. This move is perceived as an appetizer, hinting at potential future stimulus measures. While the path to stabilization remains arduous, these developments suggest a strategic step toward restoring vitality to the Chinese stock market amid a complex economic landscape.  Red Sea Crisis

In response to the recent challenges faced by its stock market, China is gearing up for a financial revival by unleashing a massive support package

Textile-to-textile – Lignin reinforcement enhances PLA biopolymer functionality 24-01-2024

Red Sea Crisis