Berry Global Group, SABIC announce partnership

Berry Global Group has manufactured a recyclable standup pouch with 30 percent PCR sourced from SABIC’s circular polymer.

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November 12, 2019

Berry Global Group, a plastic packaging producer based in Evansville, Indiana, has announced it is partnering with SABIC, a global chemistry industry leader based in Saudi Arabia, to drive the innovation and use of polyolefin resins made from chemical recycling. 

Earlier this year, Berry Global Group had announced its sustainability strategy called Impact 2025 in which the company pledged to design 100 percent of its packaging to be reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2025. As part of this commitment, Berry Global Group is collaborating with companies like SABIC to help advance sustainability in the packaging industry.

SABIC had announced at the end of 2018 its intended project to build a semicommercial unit in the Netherlands to refine and upgrade valuable feedstocks produced from recycling low-quality mixed plastic scrap. This year, SABIC has produced initial volumes of these certified polymers using its existing manufacturing facilities. From this initial volume, Berry Global Group has manufactured a recyclable, coextruded standup pouch containing 30 percent postconsumer resin (PCR) sourced from SABIC’s circular polymer, Berry Global Group reports in a news release on the partnership. Berry Global Group has committed to continue to use a portion of these materials, which have the potential to be used in polypropylene (PP) or polyethylene (PE) applications in the company’s European consumer packaging facilities.

“As a leader in sustainable packaging, we place a high value on innovation surrounding the methods by which we recover valuable plastic materials,” says Tom Salmon, chairman and CEO at Berry Global Group. “SABIC’s timeline for beginning semicommercial production is one of the fastest we have seen in the industry and we were eager to join with them in initiatives that support circular economy.

“As consumer demand for sustainable packaging continues to increase, we continue to advance the innovative ways by which we supply these markets,” Salmon continues. “We anticipate chemical recycling will play a critical role in the reuse of valuable materials, keeping more plastics in the value chain and out of the waste stream.”

“SABIC is proud to be the first petrochemical company to implement a project for the chemical recycling of challenging plastic waste into feedstock for steam crackers. This exciting project is testament to our commitment to scale up advanced chemical recycling processes of plastics back to the original polymer,” says Bob Maughon, executive vice president, sustainability, technology and innovation at SABIC. “This project is just one example of TRUCIRCLE, SABIC’s new launched initiative to encompass circular materials and technologies to enable our consumers and product manufacturers to deliver greater sustainability.”