Rethinking materials

We are certain: Through constant innovation in product development, we can increase the percentage of recycled materials in our products.

Closed recycling loops, i.e. preparation and return of production residues to the production loop are not only ecologically ­self-evident for Greiner, they are also an economic­ necessity. But there are limits. While we can manufacture non-food packaging from recycled ­granulate, recycled materials are currently not a solution for many food packagings, which we make from PE, PP or PS. Because strict rules are set by the European Food Safety Authority for food packaging. Another example is medical products for which strict rules apply for the protection of patients’ health. The proportion of purchased recycling material for the four most common plastics, PP, PS, PET and PE, is currently at nearly 2 percent. Nevertheless, we want to increase the percentage of recycled materials in our production.

Proportion of materials relative to total consumption (2018)

For reasons of confidentiality, the material consumption data is given in percent and not in absolute numbers. 

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At Greiner, the said polymers, but also cardboard, chemicals, steel and other materials play a special role: They form the basis for our products. We purchase them from world-renowned and innovative Suppliers and Business Partners. Together with them, we have been developing and are constantly looking for ecologically beneficial alternatives. We are enthusiastic about testing new and more efficient­ raw materials with which we can reduce costs and lower the impact on the environment.­ We also collaborate with our customers themselves and with leading research institutions, research and develop in our own laboratories – all with the goal of testing new raw materials and designing ­high-quality products that facilitate sustainable added value and increase the efficiency of our production processes.

The latest example of this is a shampoo bottle that is used for hair products of the Norwegian brand Define®. The bottle is made of 100 percent r-HDPE. It has an attractive design, optimal product protection and excellent environmental sustainability. The recycled material of the product which is also 100 percent recyclable has been produced from plastic milk bottles that were collected in the United Kingdom. Under the slogan”Designed for Recy­clability”, attention was paid to recyclability from the outset during development.

 

Product innovation: Shampoo bottle from recycled milk bottles 

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