A recent value-chain collaboration offered a glance at how the plastics industry is finding new routes to drive circularity within the industry, with one company rolling out certified circular LLDPE and LDPE based on feedstock derived from ocean-bound plastics.
Another company in the supply chain turned the resin into packaging film and the third used the film to package its seafood products. The companies cooperating on the project — Sabic, Polivouga and Nueva Pescanova, respectively — together have now produced the first consumer product, a frozen food packaging solution, made using Sabic’s certified circular polyolefins from recovered ocean-bound plastic.
Ocean bound plastic in this case refers to post-consumer plastic waste recovered from areas up to 50 kilometers (30 miles) inland from waterways that has the potential to end up in the rivers and oceans of the world. This waste forms the input for the advanced recycling process through which Sabic obtains an alternative feedstock used to produce certified circular polymers, in this case linear low and low density polyethylene.
Flexible film manufacturer Polivouga processes this into flexible food-contact approved packaging films that ensure the same tear and puncture resistance as competing PE packaging structures made from virgin fossil PE resins, said Tiago Barros, CEO at Polivouga.
Then, Nueva Pescanova, a leading Spanish brand owner specializing in the fishing, farming, processing and marketing of fresh, chilled and frozen seafood products, packages its frozen seafood in bags made from this film. “With this initiative, we will prevent this plastic waste from reaching the marine environment, giving them a new life,” said Ignacio González, CEO of the Nueva Pescanova Group.
The new packaging will be launched to coincide with World Oceans Day on June 8.
The results, commented Sami Al-Osaimi, vice president PE and sales at Sabic demonstrate the "art of the possible" when dedicated value chain partners collaborate with the aim of making a difference.
The ocean-bound plastic-based solution is fully certified under the Zero Plastic Oceans program and the ISCC Plus chain of custody. This means that the material flow is controlled and tracked from the ocean-bound plastic to the final packaging following a set of predefined and transparent rules.