Plastic has revolutionised the way we live, and in particular, the way we consume our goods, with over 40% of the world’s plastic production being attributed to packaging. By 2050 it is estimated that there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish.
The majority of flexible packaging such as multi-layered materials can currently only be sent to landfill, incinerated or downcycled into low-grade products.
Due to the complex structure, mechanical recycling is not possible, as the separate components do not blend well together, nor are they easy to separate.
Advanced Paper Fibre Upcycling or ‘APFU’ blends traditionally difficult to recycle multi-layered plastic packaging with the cellulose fibres found in paper waste, to create a new material with up to 2 times the tensile strength. This material can be used to manufacture higher-grade products such as stationery and furniture, further enhancing the possibilities for a robust circular economy.
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