Electrolux eyes increased recycled-content plastic

Appliance maker’s sustainability report points to 50 percent recycled content by 2030.

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March 29, 2021

Sweden-based household appliance maker Electrolux AB, in its most recent sustainability report, says it has set as a goal that by 2030 its product ranges will contain at least 50 percent recycled materials.

The company does not mention to what extent recycled-content metals will play a role but writes in more depth about its incorporation of recycled-content plastics.

Electrolux says it used 6,800 metric tons of recycled plastic in its products in 2020 and indicates it is aiming much higher.

Concerning hurdles to overcome, the appliance maker writes, “As a manufacturer, we are limited by the inadequate supply of high-quality recycled material but are committed to be part of the long-term solution.”

Electrolux says its Dish Care (dishwashing equipment) product line “is already well on its way to increasing recycled plastics in its products by nearly 40 percent.”

Last year, the company also designed what it calls a “visionary vac” prototype vacuum cleaner “entirely made from reused vacuum cleaner components and recycled plastic from discarded electronic consumer products.”

Electrolux says it worked in partnership with Sweden-based Stena Recycling on the project, which “enabled plastics from discarded hairdryers, computers and vacuum cleaners to be converted into a completely new appliance.”

Henrik Sundström, the company’s vice president of sustainability affairs, says, “The project highlights many of the considerations we take into account as we seek to become more circular.”

“One critical element in this journey to increase the use of recycled plastic is to link our roadmap to the innovation agenda and our product generation plan,” says Massimo Guarnaschelli, a vice president and head of Electrolux global R&D dish care. “This will create full transparency around every single opportunity and shift the considerations from just pure cost saving to a broader perspective in which sustainability is the driver.”