06/12/2018

Plastics News by Plasteurope.com

LOOP INDUSTRIES: Multi-year rPET supply agreements with Coca-Cola and PepsiCo / Chemical recycler's net loss widens in H1 2018

Canadian recycling technology start-up Loop Industries (Terrebonne, Québec; www.loopindustries.com) has entered into multi-year supply agreements with leading and rival drinks retailers Coca-Cola (Atlanta, Georgia / USA; www.coca-cola.com) and PepsiCo (Harrison, New York / USA; www.pepsico.com).

Under the deal with Coca-Colas Cross Enterprise Procurement Group (CEPG), Loop will supply 100% recycled PET from its plant in the US, which it runs in partnership with Indorama Ventures (IVL, Bangkok / Thailand; www.indoramaventures.com), to authorised bottlers who enter into agreements with Loop. Ron Lewis, chief supply chain officer at Coca-Cola European Partners (CCEP, Uxbridge / UK; www.cokecce.co.uk), a bottler member of CEPG, said, Investments like this one with Loop Industries support our goal to ensure that at least 50% of the material we use for our PET bottles comes from recycled plastic, and will help us divert more materials from landfills and build a stronger circular plastic economy.

PepsiCo will also take product from Loops joint venture plant in the US and incorporate the PET into its packaging by early 2020. Loop added that this agreement includes a marketing and communications plan to raise awareness of the importance of recycling, sustainability and the circular economy. Mehmood Khan, vice chairman and chief scientific officer at PepsiCo, said the partnership represented a step-change that will empower the companys drive towards creating a circular economy for plastics.

Loops technology depolymerises waste polyester plastic to its base building blocks, or monomers. The monomers are separated from one another, purified and extracted to yield monoethylene glycol (MEG) and dimethyl terephthalate (DMT), which are then repolymerised into rPET. Loops recycled PET meets US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requirements for use in food-grade packaging.
Coca-Cola and PepsiCo have made targets to boost recyclates use
Both drinks giants have previously announced initiatives to boost their use of recycled polymer. Coca-Cola is aiming to make all its packaging 100% recyclable and include 50% recycled material in its bottles and cans by 2030 see Plasteurope.com of 19.03.2018. PepsiCos goals are to design 100% of its packaging to be recyclable or biodegradable, increase recycled materials in its plastic packaging, reduce the carbon impact of packaging and increase recycling rates by 2025 see Plasteurope.com of 28.09.2018.

However, the two brands were named and shamed in a recent marine cleanup and audit by environmental advocacy group Greenpeace (Amsterdam / The Netherlands; www.greenpeace.org) and its allies from global movement Break Free From Plastic (www.breakfreefromplastic.org). Both beverage companies were identified along with Nestlé as the worlds top three plastics polluting companies see Plasteurope.com of 12.11.2018.
R&D and administrative costs contribute to Loop's net loss
In separate news, Loop Industries has announced a net loss of USD 3.5m (EUR 3.1m) for the three months ended 31 August 2018. This compares to a net loss of USD 2.2m for the same period in 2017 and, said Loop, was mostly due to a USD 1.3m increase in general and administrative expenses. For the six months ended 31 August 2018, the net loss increased to USD 7.1m from USD 3.7m from the same period in 2017, again because of higher general and administrative costs as well as increased R&D expenses of USD 700,000.

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