Tetra Pak announce plans to increase recycling rate of Liquid Board Packaging

Tetra Pak South Africa leading efforts in the collection and recycling of their Liquid Board Packaging (cartons) through a magnitude of investments and wide spread initiatives across the country.  

Tetra Pak-Klaus Plenge

Tetra Pak, a leading packaging and processing solutions provider, announced its plans to increase recycling rate of Liquid Board Packaging (LBP) in South Africa to 40% by 2030. This happened during an event attended by Ministry of Environment, Consumer Goods Council of South Africa (CGCSA), Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC), the biggest dairy and juice producers in South Africa, PETCO, FSC, Gayatri paper mill, Infinite industries, Timber plastic and waste picker associations. 

Klaus Plenge, Tetra Pak Southern Africa managing director, stated, “We are here today to present our vision for the circular economy and discuss how we can assist in reaching sustainability objectives.” He added. “Along with renewability, biodiversity, and collection. Recycling is an important priority in our sustainability strategy in Southern Africa.” 

Department of Trade,Industry and Competition – Annelize Van der Merwe

“We are dedicated to expanding collection and recycling efforts in Soth Africa, with the goal of keeping materials in use and out of landfills through effective value chain creation and support, as well as continuous recycling capability development.” 

“Within the last three years, Tetra Pak invested around R34 million in the collection and recycling local ecosystem, aiming to boost the effective recycling rate of our packages.” he adds, “In 2023, we are investing R18 million to support the industry. This shows our commitment to Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR). Our goal is to surpass 8,500 tonnes in collection and recycling, pushing us closer to a more sustainable future”.

To achieve these ambitious targets a range of initiatives was announced during the event:

  • Investing R10million in a PolyAl recycling plant planned to launch in 2024, for an investment of approximately R10-million. This will improve production line for plastiwood furniture (recycled plastic)  which is sold in various retailers around South Africa.
  • In 2024, a pallet made from 100% PolyAl will be launched ensuring proper reuse and minimising the environmental impact of packaging waste.This will be available to fast-moving consumer goods (FCMG) operations nationally, enhancing the recycling of PolyAl packaging materials. 
  • Currently, 38% of LBP delivered at Gayatri recycling facility, is derived from new activated buyback centres facilitated by Tetra Pak and PETCO. These efforts contribute to the overall sustainability and effectiveness of waste management in South Africa.
  • The company has created industry collaborations dedicated to the collection and recycling of carton packages. For instance, its ‘Choose to Recycle’ piliot school competition has been impactful, delivering for recycling approximately 45 000 cartons to date. This pilot campaign runs in conjunciton with Woodlands Dairy, PETCO, and Gayatri Paper Mills. The company is in the process broadening this campaign with more partners and to more schools in the Cape- and Gauteng region

Plenge added, “looking ahead, we plan to invest further in the next three years to continue increasing recycling capability in  South Africa. This investment will reflect our determination to create a sustainable future and an efficient recycling infrastructure in the country”. 

Tetra Pak’s current initiatives focus not only on recycling, but we have also invested €25 million in its Pinetown plant to improve efficeincies, extend its reach and serve more customers. The upgrade will have a positive impact on job creation, enhance local supply chains and significantly reduce lead times for delivery, making Tetra Pak more agile and responsive to customer needs. The investment will benefit not only customers but also local farming communities, suppliers of raw materials and services in the local community.

The Pinetown upgrade is also enhancing the plant’s operational sustainability, through the reduction of CO2 emissions, using less energy and water in processing, by incorporating alternative, green sources of electricity in manufacturing processes.

“All these initiatives are a testement to Tetra Pak’s commitment to Southern Africa and to drive recycling efforts, reduce waste, and find innovative solutions to build a sustainable future,” Plenge concludes.

Tetra Pak

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