Improvements in productivity and efficiency at Latvian PET bottle recycling company PET Baltija have produced results. In 2019, the company, which is a subsidiary of Latvia’s circular economy groundbreaker Eco Baltia Group, recycled 40,895 tons of PET bottles, 7% more than last year’s 38,075 tons and a new record for the company.
PET Baltija produces high-quality recycled PET flakes and pellets, of which almost 100% is exported to customers around the globe.
In 2018, the company invested in a separate line for the production of food-grade recycled resin. The line processes some 9 thousand PET bottles into 6–7 tons of rPET pellets on an annual basis, which are suitable for food packaging applications.
Next to producing 15 different recycled PET grades, PET Baltija also has the capacity to process production by-products, such as bottle labels and caps, are also recycled into new raw materials.
Compared to last year, this year will be a ‘complicated one’ for the recycled raw material producers, said Māris Simanovičs, chairman of the board of Eco Baltia Group. While 2019 was shaped by falling oil prices, which directly affected the prices of recycled raw materials, and the US-China trade negotiations, in 2020 not only has the price of oil continued to drop but the world has been confronted with a sharp economic downturn due to the pandemic.
“It is important that the support instruments for exporters are well-considered and help retain both the production volumes and jobs,” he said. PET Baltija has a workforce of over 200.
“This year, despite the crisis, we have continued uninterrupted production process, we’ve been developing production of PET food packaging pellets and working consistently to retain our production volumes also in the field of non-food raw material segment and to be ready for the moment, when Western European automotive industry resumes active manufacturing process,” added Kaspars Fogelmanis, board member of PET Baltija.
PET Baltija’s parent company, Eco Baltia Group is the largest environmental and waste management group in the Baltic States. Its operations range from collection and sorting to secondary logistics, wholesale and recycling of raw materials. Eco Baltia Group employs over 830 employees. The Group generated a consolidated turnover in 2019 of €70.62 million.