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  • Writer's pictureChristian Abl

Reshaping Recycling: how a new partnership is closing gaps to open up greater plastic circularity

To bring plastic circularity forward, the industry needs out-of-the-box system thinkers: Novel and innovative partnerships are being forged to evolve waste sorting and recycling.

As part of a circular plastic future, recycling is a huge part of the solution, but as a system, recycling itself needs a solution. For all the changing consumer mindset and behaviour shifts around recycling, it’s estimated, for example, that in 2021, Europe achieved an overall recycling rate of around 23% (Source: AMI, 2022); collectively, we have to make significant improvements to the system.

Closing the gap needs new partnerships

Recycling progress is being made, of course; higher volumes of plastic waste are being collected, thanks in part to Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) schemes that manage material recovery for lightweight packaging (LWP), particularly in Germany as a great example of the success of such schemes.

But this needs to grow and scale, and today there is more fragmentation and disconnect in the gap between waste management and recycler. It’s time to close that gap and connect the upstream and downstream expertise, through partnerships and collaboration.

Announced 12th May 2022, a new such partnership has been formed; Recelerate is a new organisation, formed by Borealis and the Reclay Group, experts in plastic recycling and EPR respectively. Recelerate is an example of the smart new models the value chain needs to unlock progress; it’s an organisation formed to reshape and redesign the recycling system to work more efficiently and create higher volumes of recycled materials.

It means Recelerate will identify opportunities to add value and invest where it matters, to ensure more and more plastic waste is collected, sorted, and recycled into high-quality plastic materials.

To solve. To scale.

Through this unique partnership, the ambition is to create an evolving model of efficiencies that can be scaled to enable more businesses, regions and people to embrace greater circularity. Recelerate is great evidence of EverMinds™ in action; influencers and experts working together to accelerate circular progress for plastic.

The future requires more and more inspiring solutions and ideas to ensure that plastic waste is never wasted, only valued across many lifetimes, with Recelerate being a great step forward on that journey. Scaling the EPR model from its strong base in the German market will also be a part of that journey, with this new force helping to facilitate that growth.

This is a critical moment for new business models and solutions like Recelerate; an opportunity to close a gap and open up a bigger future of circular plastic, sooner.

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