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Attero is building a Polymer Recycling Plant for plastic film at its Wijster site. This new plant will have a capacity of 24 Ktonne per year and represents an investment of more than 25 million Euro. Attero has been sorting plastics from household residual waste and from the Plastic Hero bags for some years. Until now, these sorted monostreams were compressed into bales and sold to foreign recycling companies in particular. The recycling process requires large amounts of energy. This energy is also produced by Attero. As we are able to process the residual flows that are released during process, such as waste and waste water, we decided to build a Polymer Recycling Plant in Wijster.

Sorted film from post-separated and source-separated plastics is produced into LDPE regranulate following some intensive cleaning stages. The main difference between the existing plants is the capacity to wash polluted film intensively, including a “hot wash”, and to process it into a high-grade and odour-free granulate. The European Union granted a LIFE subsidy for this innovative project. As the applied technology in the new factory is deemed to be innovative and unique, a subsidy for more than 3 million Euro was granted. The construction started in March and the first granulate will be supplied to our purchasers by the end of this year.

Attero is continuously looking for opportunities to close cycles. By building this factory, it hopes to market regranulate in the Netherlands and neighbouring countries and to contribute to reduced consumption of primary raw materials. Attero's new recycling approach adds various steps to the existing working method. The most important is an innovative way of washing the plastic with hot water. By using clean water at 70-90 degrees Celsius with various additives and soap, the plant cleans the plastic intensively and the odour disappears. After use the hot water is taken to a special plant where it is purified for reuse.

Washing and granulating immediately after sorting produces massive savings on transport. The attached pollution does not have to be transported and that saves on CO2 emissions too. It represents a major step ahead in many ways. We are applying state-of-the-art technology and work with top-class suppliers. Attero expects to be building a factory that is able to produce high-grade raw materials from even the most polluted plastics.

The benefits at a glance:

  • The result is an odour-free and high-quality foil regranulate. 
  • It is an industrial-scale recycling plant at one site for LDPE film. 
  • Reuse is efficient (62%). The remainder is pollution and moisture, which are processed on site. 
  • It has less environmental impact than the current recycling method, because the process uses residual heat instead of natural gas. 
  • The cycle is virtually closed. Process water is purified and reused. 
  • The film regranulate limits the need for LDPE granulate from fossil oil. 
  • The CO2 emissions from this plastic recycling method are significantly lower than for incineration. 
  • Regranulate transport replaces transport of bales of plastic to recycling companies.