Berry Global Group Inc., North America's largest plastics processor, is teaming up with Georgia-Pacific Recycling to create a closed-loop system to recover post-consumer plastics.
Evansville, Ind.-based Berry is pushing for post-consumer polyethylene film and polypropylene, which it wants to use in new products.
Georgia-Pacific Recycling will collect post-consumer plastic from its national network of suppliers and transport the material to Berry, which will reprocess it into PE film and PP products.
Berry's use of post-consumer plastics is small but growing, CEO Tom Salmon said in a Jan. 31 conference call. He added that Berry is having "better, more collaborative" discussions with customers about using recycled raw materials.
"We're not doing this just as a public service. We believe any opportunity to monetize these opportunities to recycle materials — to eliminate plastics waste, given Berry's scale, number of facilities and ability to reclaim and reprocess — [is a] unique value proposition," Salmon said.
He called the conversations that Berry is having with customers about using post-consumer feedstocks "very encouraging."
"I've been doing this a lot of years, and the dialogue is more actionable and better than ever before," Salmon said.
Berry's goal is to create a reliable, high-quality stream of post-consumer resin that can supplement or displace virgin resin in specific applications.
Jericho, N.Y.-based Georgia-Pacific Recycling sells about 5 million tons of paper, plastic and metals annually.
According to Plastics News data, Berry is the third-largest injection molder in North America, the largest film manufacturer, the seventh-largest thermoformer and the 10th-largest blow molder. The publicly traded company has more than 48,000 employees and 290 locations on six continents. It generated pro forma 2019 sales of $12.6 billion.