Cicloplast, a Spanish non-profit organisation for the promotion of recycling and recycling technology is coordinating a new project based on the principles of the Circular Economy. The participants include ANAPE, the Spanish association of EPS producers; El Corte Inglés, the biggest department store group in Europe; Total Petrochemicals Iberica; and Coexpan, a Spanish manufacturer of rigid plastic sheets and thermoformed products and founding partner of Cicloplast.
The aim of the new project is to design and develop a new system for the collection, pre-treatment and recycling of expanded polystyrene waste to produce new, high added value polystyrene products suitable for food contact application. The participants, who represent the complete plastics value chain, are collaborating in this project, which has received a €1.5 million grant from the European Commission. The partners are working to create technology which will allow waste EPS to be reintegrated into the consumption chain, hence closing the loop for this material.
Coexpan will be responsible for verifying the functionality of the newly derived formulations - are these in accordance with the prevailing quality standards in the food sector? – and to that end will analyse the new materials' thermoformability, food preservation capability and safety for food contact applications.