MetaPure – a path into the future!

Most of the PET bottles circulating in Europe are not fed back into the packaging market. Instead, the valuable raw material that is PET is used for energy recovery by incineration, ends up in landfills or is recycled into granulate, for use outside the food and beverage industries. It’s essentially the fibre industry that uses cleaned PET. PET bottles, like their glass counterparts, are not waste in the traditional sense. PET as a material can be processed so that it can be used again for its original purpose. An old bottle is transformed into a new bottle, while at the same time saving on energy and resources.

LogoThe biggest challenge involved in bottle-to-bottle-recycling is regaining food-grade quality. The used PET bottles are soiled to differing degrees of severity, but after being processed have to exhibit the same quality parameters as new goods. In order to achieve this, you need expertise in the field of bottle manufacture, filling and treatment. Right from the start, Krones aimed to provide bottle-to-bottle-recycling, and the process we have developed has been specifically focused on this approach. For cleaning the used bottles, we tapped into long decades of corporate experience. Decontamination, by contrast, is a process development specifically modified for the particular needs of the beverage industry. What’s special about it is the reliable, energy-optimised method of decontaminating the PET material in flake form, resulting in high-quality PET flakes from which new PET bottles can be manufactured.

On the PET recycling market, Krones is offering with Metapure a fully developed, field-trialled technology that is able to produce food-quality flakes from used PET bottles for making new PET containers. This innovative process saves on both electricity and thermal energy, on water and new raw materials, with concomitant economies in terms of crude oil as well. The reduction in CO2 emissions is substantial.

Under the aegis of the EU’s Eco-innovation initiative, the European Commission is supporting Krones in introducing an FDA-compliant flake recycling process. The aim is to successfully establish eco-compatible processes and environment-friendly products on the European market, and thus upgrade the competitive capabilities of companies in the EU. The Krones recycling process enables resource-economy to be progressed by reducing waste, emissions and pollutants, thus making an important contribution to protecting the natural environment.

At this year’s drinktec, we shall be showcasing this topic as well in Hall B6. I shall be at the fair from 16 to 20 September, and would be delighted to answer in person any questions you may have about our project.

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Susanne Huber