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Greiner Packaging extends blockchain-backed Plastic Bank partnership to secure Philippines waste collection

GO CIRCULAR

Greiner Packaging extends blockchain-backed Plastic Bank partnership to secure Philippines waste collection

Greiner Packaging is extending its collaboration with social enterprise Plastic Bank to launch five collection branches in Manila, Philippines – one of the world’s largest plastic waste-producing countries. - PackagingInsights

In recent years, 331.5 metric tons of plastic waste were collected, the equivalent of 16.5 million plastic bottles. Greiner Packaging has been cooperating with Plastic Bank since 2019. 

Collection communities exchange plastic for life-improving benefits through the scheme. Exchanges are recorded through a blockchain-secured platform that enables traceable collection, secures income and verifies reporting. 

Plastic Bank says it can empower ocean stewards to stop plastic from entering the marine environment by advancing a circular economy and fighting poverty through these initiatives.

“Our partnership demonstrates that a circular economy is possible. The cycle from plastic waste carelessly thrown into the environment to recycled granulate, that companies can use to make new products, is a prime example of the potential offered by initiatives like this, says Manfred Stanek, CEO of Greiner Packaging. 

Processing collection

The collected material is processed into “social plastic” feedstock for reuse in products and packaging. 

We still have a long way to go before we achieve a global circular economy.

Greiner Packaging

The Philippines generates at least 2.7 million metric tons of plastic waste annually, according to the country’s Environment Secretary Maria Antonia Yulo-Loyzaga.

This week, the Philippines’ lower house of Congress approved taxing single-use plastics, following president Ferdinand Marcos Jr’s commitment to tackle ocean pollution. 

The Senate must approve the tax measure before a reconciled bill is sent to Marcos for signature. The tax is expected to raise 9.3 billion pesos (US$481 million) in revenues annually, which will be used to fund solid waste management projects. 

Partnerships such as the ones between Greiner Packaging and Plastic Bank are an essential step in the right direction. In addition to advancing a circular economy and preventing plastic waste in the oceans, it also improves the lives of those who help collect it.  

Greiner

In July, child-resistant cannabis packaging specialist Dymapak launched a plastic consumption and ocean pollution reduction initiative in partnership with Plastic Bank, which is also a collection and reward system for plastic packaging waste and helps Dymapak promote issues surrounding reuse and recycling in cannabis packaging. 

Money from waste

Plastic Bank says its mission is to reveal the value of plastic. Collection community members no longer see the plastic as waste but as a valuable resource, it says. 

By giving collection community members access to life-improving benefits such as secure income, health, work, and life insurance, digital connectivity, and social and fintech services. Plastic Bank empowers communities to build a better future – not only in the Philippines but also in Indonesia, Brazil and Egypt.

Plastic Bank

Recently, the importance of ensuring sustainable incomes for informal waste pickers, who collect packaging waste in many areas of the world, was highlighted at the global COP27 climate change conference in Egypt.  

A target of reducing waste on the African continent by 50% before 2050 was set, with a focus on workers that rely on waste collection labor to survive. This job market should be protected and improved before novel solutions like advanced recycling and incineration projects, proponents say. 

The initiative must focus on job-generating and inclusive solutions, discarding industry-led initiatives like incineration and chemical recycling and ensuring that waste pickers and waste cooperatives are formative parts of the models to be adopted.

executive director of Tanzania-based zero waste organization Nipe Fagio

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