The new facility will help convert locally collected kerbside materials into rHDPE and rPP resin


Pact and Cleanaway have collaborated to build new plastic recycling in Victoria, Australia. (Credit: Hans Braxmeier from Pixabay)

Rigid plastic packaging products provider Pact Group and Cleanaway Waste Management have announced an investment of A$38m ($27.9m) to build a new plastic recycling facility in Victoria, Australia.

Located in Laverton, the new facility is believed to become the largest post-consumer polyethylene recycling plant in Australia for the conversion of locally collected kerbside materials into food-grade recycled high-density polyethylene (rHDPE) and recycled polypropylene (rPP) resin.

The new plant, which will be situated at Cleanaway’s recycling facility at Laverton, will hold the capacity to process over 20,000 tonnes or the equivalent of more than 500,000 plastic milk bottles and food tubs collected from household recycling bins into food-grade resins.

Pact and Cleanaway’s joint venture (JV) is said to complement the existing PET JV between Pact, Cleanaway and Asahi, which is building the country’s largest PET recycling facility in Albury. It is expected to be commissioned by the end of this year.

Pact managing director and CEO Sanjay Dayal said: “This new recycling facility highlights the progress we are making in expanding our reuse and recycling capability, a core component of our growth strategy. we are making in expanding our reuse and recycling capability, a core component of our growth strategy.”

The new Laverton facility will allow food and beverage manufacturers to include locally processed recycled content in their packaging. Multiple brand owners are planning to minimise the use of virgin plastic by 2025.

Construction on the new facility is set to commence by the end of this year. The facility is expected to be fully operational by December next year.

The new business will run as Circular Plastics Australia (PE).

Cleanaway will offer the recycled plastic through its collection and sorting network, while Pact will deliver technical knowledge, operate the plant and purchase recycled plastic resin from the facility to use in their packaging and the remaining plastic resin will be sold to third parties.

The new facility is being supported by the Victorian Government via its Recycling Victoria Infrastructure Fund and the Australian Government via its Recycling Modernisation Fund.

Cleanaway chief operating officer Brendan Gill said: “This 20,000-tonne plastic pelletising facility is a huge win for the environment by creating a high value, recycled raw material from plastics we collect and sort through our network. This venture makes it possible to turn a milk bottle back into a milk bottle.”