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Two factories in Henderson County to use plastic waste in label production


Two factories in Henderson County to use plastic waste in label production

UPM Raflatac, a global supplier of sustainable labeling materials with factories in Mills River and Fletcher, is the first company in the world to invest in Ocean-bound plastics waste as label raw material in its new Ocean Action labels, according to the press release - BlueRidgeNow

Ocean-bound plastic is abandoned plastic waste recovered from areas up to 31 miles inland from waterways, defined as “at risk of ending up in the ocean” by the Ocean Bound Plastics Certification Program. These plastics are collected, sorted and chemically recycled into pyrolysis oil. The pyrolysis oil is then used to create polypropylene plastic granules, which is made into a film. This film is then purchased by UPM Raflatac to create its Ocean Action labels.

”The new innovative Ocean Action label material is the latest step in our beyond fossils journey. It does not only help prevent the plastic waste from ending up in the oceans but also offers brand owners the possibility to meet their recycled content targets for packaging. The Ocean Action label material is an easy-to-use drop-in solution created especially for food and cosmetics end-uses as it has exactly the same performance as the current fossil-based labels,” UPM Raflatac Business Development Manager Eliisa Laurikainen said in the release.

OBPCert estimates that ocean bound plastic generates 80% of plastic marine litter. Only around 10% of plastic waste is recycled globally, while the rest ends up at landfills, in incineration, and in leakage to nature.

To make the Ocean Action label, UPM Raflatac has collaborated closely with multiple partners in the value chain, the release said. These partners include Heng Hiap Industries, a a Malaysian-based plastic recycling company; Saudi Basic Industries Corporation, a Saudi chemical manufacturing company, and Taghleef Industries, one of the largest film producers worldwide for food packaging and labeling.

“We are proud to be part of this initiative that represents a further step towards a more circular economy, thanks to an efficient reuse of valuable material, and is a responsible effort to preserve our environment, especially for younger generations,” said Simone Baldin, Business Unit Manager - Labels Europe at Taghleef Industries.

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