At K 2019, the world's largest trade event for plastics and rubber, which ran from October 16 to the 23rd in Germany, Lindner presented the next generation of their Micromat shredder, along with an additional model and a new and improved universal cutting system. According to Lindner, the company's Micromat is a top seller in the plastics shredding market. In terms of processes, the mechanical recycling of plastic waste always starts with shredding, which is precisely why Lindner says they demonstrated their new Micromat 1500 shredder at this year's K 2019. The new model is available globally.

Based on Lindner's tried-and-tested technology, the Micromat series has been further optimised to meet current market demands in the plastics industry. And with the 1500 size - meaning a rotor length of 1500 mm - a new entry-level model from the Micromat series has been created. 

The most innovative feature, however, according to Lindner, is the Micromat's new Multiplex cutting system. Thanks to the three-dimensional arrangement of the rotor knives, this exceptional system can shred almost any plastic. 

As a result of the knives actively pulling in the material, output can realistically be increased by some 40 percent on average compared to previous technologies.

Stefan Scheiflinger-Ehrenwerth, Head of Product Management at Lindner, explains: "During development, we tested a wide range of materials together with our clients and optimised this cutting system's geometry to cover as many types of plastic as possible. The long-term test finally revealed that the new Multiplex rotor not only increases the throughput enormously, but in some cases even multiplies it."

In addition to mechanical improvements, the machine's software and controls were redeveloped from scratch. With the new Lindner Mobile HMI (Human Machine Interface), the manufacturer is reacting to the growing shortage of skilled workers and focusing on extremely simple, self-explanatory menu navigation. The mobile control panel can be placed at the front or rear of the shredder depending on the task at hand, for example a screen exchange. Moreover, the touchscreen only displays the relevant functions.

With the new control software, the shredder is also able to communicate with downstream equipment in the process chain and, for example, function as a dosing unit for the facility or pass on data about the materials' quality to the extruder. 

A special machine version for shredding filmWith the Micromat HP series, Lindner says they are launching a shredder that is specially designed for shredding post-consumer and industrial film. Equipped with a direct belt drive that enables rotor speeds of over 300 rpm, these new machines can produce up to 2.5 times more output than the basic version in this area of application.

Furthermore, the company says the new cutting system is able to precisely cut plastics into flakes for cleaning, sorting and subsequent extrusion in just a single step. The advantage of this feature is that additional fine granulation is unnecessary, meaning that energy and maintenance expenditure is significantly reduced while simultaneously lowering investment costs. 

Sobeys Inc. today announced plans to donate a collection of public seating made entirely of recycled plastic bags and heavier recycled plastic materials, such as bins, to be installed in family-oriented community spaces across Atlantic Canada. 

Borealis, a leading chemicals and plastics group company based out of Austria, acquired Germany-based plastics recycler mtm plastics in 2016. According to a press release from the company, since then they have remained consistent in efforts to drive plastics industry circularity and are developing regranulates of the highest quality. The result is sophisticated and innovative new products jointly created with partners from the waste management and plastics industries (competencies which were on display at the recent K 2019 trade event in Dusseldorf, Germany, October 19-26.)

K 2019, the largest global trade fair for the plastics and rubber industry, which hosted more than 3,300 exhibitors from over 60 nations and approximately 225,000 attendees, drew to a close in Düsseldorf, Germany after eight days on Wednesday 23 October. According to a press release issued by show organizers following the event, this year's K highlighted the necessity of having operational circular economies along the complete plastics industry material chain, and visitors this year took great interest especially in recycling systems, sustainable raw materials and resource-saving processes.

The level of skepticism around the recycling of plastic packaging and our ability to keep it out of nature has reached new heights. Skepticism is evident everywhere. There are calls for bans on single-use food packaging, multi-use plastic shopping bags, and foam polystyrene food packaging. 

Flexible packaging has seen tremendous growth globally, with an annual growth rate of 3.8 percent within North America alone. It can be found in a vast array of shapes and sizes containing a wide range of products such as coffee, laundry detergent, baby food, cat litter, single-serve juices, motor oil, toothpaste and more. Packages can be made with a single layer, a mono-material laminate (i.e. multiple layers from the same polymer) or the more complicated, multi-material laminate (made from multiple layers from different polymers). Flexible packaging can also include papers and metals as key components, closures using zips, spouts or reseal adhesives, and various additives. While these packaging designs and formulations offer specialized benefits, recovery rates are low or non-existent.

San Francisco-based Recology has added four Max-AI AQC (for Autonomous Quality Control) units and one VIS (for Visual Identification System) to Recycle Central, a 200,000-square-foot materials recovery facility (MRF) located at the city's famous Pier 96. (See a video of the technology in action below.) 

Cleanfarms is unique on the Canadian recycling landscape. It is the only large-scale operation that is recovering plastic waste for recycling in the agricultural sector. As a non-profit industry stewardship organization, it operates in a similar fashion as those set up for electronics, paint and printed paper and packaging. Industry members, which are producers of products for the agricultural sector, finance the cost of recovery of their empty containers and other farm-based products for recycling and secure disposal at end of life. 

As of October 1st, RTT STEINERT, the Zittau, Germany-based subsidiary of STEINERT GmbH, is pooling all resources relevant to its customers in the waste and recycling sector at one location. The company will be doing business in Zittau under its new name, STEINERT UniSort.

Since launching their Charter on Plastics earlier this year, Walmart Canada has implemented a number of packaging changes which the company says will help prevent more than 1.1 million pounds of plastic from entering the supply chain - the weight of 100 elephants.  

Neste, the world's leading provider of renewable diesel, renewable jet fuel, and an expert in delivering drop-in renewable chemical solutions, and REMONDIS, one of the world's largest privately owned recycling, service and water companies, have signed an agreement to collaborate in the development of chemical recycling of plastic waste. The companies will focus on developing and accelerating chemical recycling with a target to reach an annual capacity to process over 200 kilotons of waste plastic.Mechanical recycling of plastics has been making a positive contribution to circular economy, raw material security, and climate protection for decades. Through joining forces, REMONDIS and Neste combine REMONDIS's waste collecting and sorting capabilities and Neste's experience and know-how in oil refining and processing of low-quality waste and residue materials. The companies wish to build an ecosystem around chemical recycling to enable other companies in the value chain to join the initiative and complement mechanical recycling by closing the material circle also for those plastics that today are difficult or impossible to recycle. 

Encorp Pacific, better known as Return-It, the industry owned, not-for-profit product stewardship organization responsible for beverage container recycling in B.C., will increase deposits for non-alcohol beverage containers up to and including 1 litre from 5 cents to 10 cents, starting November 1, 2019.

STADLER, the specialist in designing and assembling sorting plants for the recycling and waste disposal industry, opened new global headquarters in Germany on Friday, 18 October. At an inauguration event attended by VIPs and senior company executives, Mr. Willi Stadler, CEO of the STADLER Group, opened the doors to an ultra-modern, five-story building which has the space to accommodate the company's recent and future growth. 

The Recycling Partnership has announced the first-ever 'roadmap' aimed at addressing systemic issues in the U.S. recycling system and catalyzing the transition toward a circular economy for packaging. The report, "The Bridge to Circularity: Putting the ‘New Plastics Economy' into Practice in the U.S." is inspired and endorsed by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation whose New Plastics Economy Global Commitment unites more than 400 businesses, governments and other organizations behind a common vision and targets to address plastic waste and pollution at its source.  

Below is Waste Robotics' video showing the latest artificially-intelligent robotic technology sorting bags.

TOMRA Collection Solutions has launched a bundle of digital products free of charge for its reverse vending customers for smoother operations, richer reporting and greater shopper interactivity. Available for all new and existing retail customers, the Digital Starter Pack extends the value of reverse vending for retailers and their shoppers beyond the machines' core function of receiving empty bottles and cans for recycling.

Balcones Resources, based out of Austin, Texas, has partnered with CP Group of San Diego, California to upgrade their single-stream residential and commercial material recovery facility. The 100,000 square foot facility was originally installed in 2012. Changing market conditions, rising labour costs and new technology were the main motivators for Balcones to undertake a large retrofit.  

The Recycling Product News team was in Toronto this week for the Waste & Recycling Expo Canada (aka CWRE) annual trade show and convention. We interviewed representatives from some of the innovative companies exhibiting on the show floor. 

As we approach the 2019 Canadian federal election, Friends of the Earth Canada has a message for politicians. According to the organization, the electorate wants action to stop plastics pollution: 86% of Canadians want politicians to take more action on plastics as a way of reducing climate harmful greenhouse gases. And 8 out 10 Canadians will support politicians to ban production and use of single-use disposable plastic containers and packaging.

Foam Cycle is the first patent pending foam (aka. Styrofoam) collection and processing system specifically designed to be placed outdoors. It began as a test project in 2016 under a public-private partnership agreement between Foam Cycle and the Sussex County MUA, in New Jersey, which owns and operates a 250 acre on site landfill and recycling drop off collection center. 

Sesotec GmbH, the manufacturer of metal detectors and sorting systems for the plastics industry, will be showcasing its contribution to a circular economy at K 2019 from October 16-23 in Dusseldorf, Germany. 

TOMRA Sorting Recycling will be at the K-Show 2019, presenting its frontrunning position in the circular economy, including innovative sorting equipment like INNOSORT FLAKE and giving a preview of a groundbreaking innovation in the fields of Artificial Intelligence. 

Running since March of this year, FCC Environmental Services has opened up a new single stream plant in Houston, TX. The plant will accept residential single stream material from throughout Houston for a minimum of 15 years. FCC has also made the city the new home of their U.S. corporate headquarters, settling into the East Houston community. The district has embraced the recycling facility as a welcome investment in an underdeveloped part of town. FCC has employed many local citizens at the site, including some from a second-chance labor provider, to really make themselves part of the local landscape.

The Association of Plastic Recyclers will be conducting a two-day training course (October 22-23) on designing plastics for recyclability at the Van Dyk Recycling Solutions Headquarters in Norwalk, CT.

In keeping with the show motto "Making more out of your plastics", Coperion will present their enhanced ZSK Mc18 twin screw extruders at K 2019, being held from16-23, October, in Düsseldorf, Germany. The company says their latest, redesigned models are loaded with numerous new features that optimize convenience and handling while minimizing downtimes and energy use. 

ChemCycling is the name of a new pilot project, being undertaken in partnership with Mondi, the global packaging and paper group, and COROOS, a food-industry supplier, by which Germany-based chemical producer BASF is further developing their process for the chemical recycling of plastic waste. Plastic waste that is difficult to recycle, such as mixed or contaminated plastics, is converted into a pyrolysis oil through thermochemical processes. This secondary raw material can be used as input in BASF's production process, thereby partly replacing fossil resources, to manufacture numerous chemical products. 

The first robotic sorting systems in Canada were installed in the Fall of 2018 by Machinex, at the Sani-Éco MRF in Granby, Quebec, and soon after, at the Chatham-Kent Recycling MRF in Merlin, Ontario. At both facilities Machinex installed a double robotic sorting system, using two SamurAI robotic sorting units placed in succession on a single line. This summer, Machinex installed three more robotic sorting units at a MRF in Toronto and one machine at a MRF in Winnipeg.

According to Germany-based Steinert, everyone involved in the plastics industry is concerned with strict legislation and a social sense of responsibility for recovering plastics. Black plastics represent a particular challenge because they cannot be detected with the optical sorting technology found in standard recycling plants. STEINERT technology allows black plastics to be sorted from the general waste stream into pure grades. This enables plastic-processing companies to respond to the new challenges of the circular economy in a cost-effective manner and to be equipped for all the processes involved in plastic recovery and processing in equal measure.

Three years have passed since the last K, the world's premier fair for the plastics and rubber industry, and everything has changed. Apart from the media attacks on plastic products, the industry also has other challenges to overcome, such as China's import ban on plastic waste and constantly increasing recycling quotas entering into force. 

Czech recycling company OZO Ostrava s.r.o., recently commissioned a new line for processing pre-pressed plastic bales. At the heart of the line is a SENNEBOGEN 818 M powered by an eGreen electric drive.

The Government of Canada says it is dedicated to protecting Canada's land and waterways from plastic waste and marine litter. According to a recent press release, there are currently few options for recycling and disposing of boats made of fibreglass. As a result, most of these boats end up in a landfill, or worse, abandoned on land or in the water. 

Gillette, in partnership with international recycling leader TerraCycle Canada, has announced for the first-time, that all brands of disposable razors, replaceable-blade cartridge units and razor plastic packaging are recyclable on a national scale. 

"Digitalization will significantly change today's circular economy," according to Naemi Denz, the Managing Director of the Waste Treatment and Recycling Association in the German Engineering Federation (VDMA). Denz says that digitally transmitted information, for example, will ensure that secondary raw materials can be designed with even greater precision. This topic will be among many at IFAT 2020, set for Germany in May, 2020.

In keeping with the University's long-standing commitment to environmental sustainability, Trent University is slated to become the first university in Ontario to install permeable grid paving - an environmental innovation made popular in Europe.

Ettlinger, a member of the Maag Group, will take advantage of the upcoming K 2019 in Germany this October to unveil the company's brand new ERF 1000 high performance melt filter for very high throughputs in recycling applications for plastic materials. The company will present it's new technology at Stand A04 in Hall 9, during this year's K 2019, the world's largest trade fair focused on plastics and rubber.

The Canadian Plastics Industry Association (CPIA) has released a report that illustrates the resilience of the Canadian recycling infrastructure in weathering the significant market challenges that have affected the industry over the past two years.

Walmart and TerraCycle are joining forces to launch the nation's largest car seat recycling event in nearly 4,000 Walmart stores across the country.

The Alliance to End Plastic Waste has announced that Jacob Duer will serve as the inaugural President and CEO of the newly formed not-for-profit, effective October 1.  Duer joins the AEPW from the United Nations, where he most recently served as a Program Director for the UN Environment Programme.

In September the City of Bangor, Maine will formally move over to a new arrangement in which residents will throw all of their recycling in with their trash, leaving the mixed waste to be picked up from the curbside every week, as currently happens with trash.

Santa Barbara County, California has buried about 200,000 tons of annual trash in its Tajiguas Landfill since 1967. The landfill was on track to hit its capacity in about six years from now, until the announcement of a renewable energy project that is expected to extend its life by an additional decade. 

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