Asahi Beverages and Coca-Cola Europacific Partners (CCEP) have joined forces with Pact Group and Cleanaway to provide an industry model for recycling solutions in Australia.

The four company’s have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to form a joint venture that will include building and operating a new PET recycling facility that will process the equivalent of around one billion bottles each year to produce more than 20,000 tonnes of new recycled PET bottles and food packaging.

The proposed facility will provide a massive boost to Australian recycling by processing raw plastic material collected via Container Deposit Schemes and kerbside recycling. The facility will use state-of-the-art sorting, washing, decontamination and extrusion technology.

The joint venture’s recycling solution also includes the PET recycling facility currently being built by Pact Group, Cleanaway and Asahi Beverages through Circular Plastics Australia (PET) in Albury-Wodonga, which is expected to be completed later this year.

The cross-industry solution combines the complementary expertise of each participant to enhance their individual sustainability goals.

Cleanaway will provide available PET through its collection and sorting network, Pact will provide technical and packaging expertise and CCEP, Asahi Beverages and Pact will buy the recycled PET from the facility to use in their respective products. The plant, when fully operational, will be run by Pact.

A decision on the plant’s location is anticipated in the coming months and construction is expected to be complete by 2023.

CCEP and Asahi Beverages, while competitors in the beverage market, have, for the purpose of this joint venture, joined with Pact and Cleanaway to increase the production and availability of recycled PET resin in Australia. The parties are proud to work with one another to advance the cause of sustainability and recycling.

This proposed plant is an important step forward in creating a local plastics circular economy in Australia. This new self-sustaining industry is expected to create dozens of new jobs during the construction phase and operation of the plant.

Peter West, CCEP Vice President and General Manager Australia, Pacific and Indonesia said the deal is a step towards creating a circular economy.

“This new joint venture will deliver a collaborative cross-industry solution to recycle the material that we use to produce our products. Together we can work towards creating a circular economy for PET within the beverages industry, ensuring that we are using more locally processed recycled content for the production of our bottles in Australia.”

Asahi Beverages Group CEO Robert Iervasi agreed, saying: “This will be a ground-breaking project that will massively boost PET recycling capacity. It will help transform recycling in Australia by providing a new, local source of high-quality recycled PET.

“The building of this large PET plant along with the facility in Albury-Wodonga is a major step towards helping us deliver a truly circular economy for our consumers.”

Cleanaway Chief Operating Officer Brendan Gill said this PET plastic pelletising facility is a huge win for the environment by creating a high value, recycled raw material from plastics.

“At Cleanaway our mission is to make a sustainable future possible and we see waste as a resource to achieve that.”

Group CEO and Managing Director from Pact Group, Sanjay Dayal said: “This partnership shows the value of a solution that works for industry and consumers. This is completely aligned to Pact’s strategy which is to lead the local circular economy through reuse, recycling, and packaging solutions.”

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