Plastics News - Show Daily - October 24, 2022 - 4

4 * Plastics News, October 24, 2022
SHOW DAILY
Tomra: No ceiling to mechanical recycling
TOMRA
RECYCLING
Hall 9,
Booth D47
Eric Olsson, area segment
manager for plastic in
North America for Tomra
Recycling, at K 2022.
Plastics News photo by Marco Stepniak
By Jim Johnson
Plastics News Staff
Some see mechanical recycling
having limitations on what can be
accomplished. Eric Olsson, area
segment manager for plastic in
North America for Tomra Recycling,
is not one of those people.
Tomra makes near-infrared optical
equipment used by plastic
recyclers to sort different resins,
offering products that handle
fl akes as well as plastics that pass
along conveyors on sorting lines.
" Let's not pretend we have hit
the ceiling on mechanical recycling
by any means, " said Olsson
at the Tomra booth.
" I'm actually quite passionate
about this because my perception
myself was that mechanical recycling
could only do so much. There
was this sort of status quo level of
quality that can be reached, " he
said, when he previously worked
at resin maker Braskem.
Optical sorting technology, at
one point, was only used to target
a single type of resin, but now the
technology can extract multiple
combinations of resin types and
colors to create multiple profi table
fractions, Olsson said.
But some recyclers, converters
and brand owners still believe
they are limited in the colors and
purity levels of their recycled
content, he said.
" We don't need to compromise.
It's not like we have to accept that
as a reality. Now we can say, 'No,
we can push that. Let's build any
color in post-consumer recycling.
And let's get to plus 99 percent
purity as well,' " Olsson said.
" It's still being learned by the
downstream partners. There's
always leaders in that. There's
always a pack that tries to move
in the right direction as well, " he
said. " But that is still something
that's still being explored. "
" We'll keep pushing the bar, "
said Michèle Weimer, communications
coordinator for Tomra Recycling,
a unit of Tomra Systems
ASA of Asker, Norway.
Tomra was able maintain
steady sales in its recycling systems
throughout the pandemic
and now has seen them improve
as economies open back up.
Resin prices have been on a
wild ride, but Olsson said sales
are not typically impacted by the
peaks and valleys of the commodity
market. That's because companies
looking to invest in the
technology are in the business for
the long haul and understand the
dynamics at play.
Prices go up and then they go
down, again and again and again.
" Most of the projects we work
with are not concerned with any
of these little upswings or downswings.
Yes, there are older operations
that are limping long. But
most of anything done that's new,
you are planning on really bad
pricing at times. You are planning
on some times when your margins
are excellent. That's recycling, "
he said.
" Anything new is designed to
be resilient during those down
times, " he said.
Tomra also was at the K Show
to explain its views about gaps the
company sees in the plastics value
chain involving design, data, alignment,
affordability, quality, quantity,
perception and policy.
That's a lot of gaps.
But the sortation company
said the fi rm is
equipped to help plug two of
those gaps - quality and quantity
of recycled plastics.
Recycled-content targets,
driven by both regulation and
brand owners, means that
there's never been more demand
for recycled plastics
these days. And that demand
only will grow as recycled-content
targets tied to 2025 and
2030 established by many companies
inch closer and closer.
But with this demand comes
a realization that there is not
enough high-quality recycled material
on the market to meet expectations,
the company said.
Using traditional collection
and sorting methods coupled
with advanced mechanical recycling
is a way to increase quality.
Tomra describes advanced mechanical
recycling as a process
that includes hot washing and
deodorization, for example, to
create higher-quality and odorless
recycled material that can
be used in what the company
calls demanding applications.
Closing the quantity gap, Tomra
said, means capturing and
processing material that would
otherwise be incinerated or
landfi lled. The company's line of
sorting equipment, including Autosort,
Autosort Flake and Innosort
Flake, can help separate this
fraction of material that might
otherwise not be considered, the
company said.
Gneuss offers compete recycling line for fi rst time
By Jim Johnson
Plastics News Staff
For nearly four decades, Gneuss
Kunststofftechnik GmbH has
been known for making components
- fi rst starting with fi ltration
systems and then expanding
from there - for plastics recycling.
But, now, after about three
years of consideration and development,
the company is out
with its fi rst complete recycling
line under the name Omni Recycling
Machines aimed at providing
one-stop service.
" That's really something new
for us. We were always a component
supplier. We are fi lters, measurement
technology,
viscomeVisit
us: 13 A 43
Spritzgiessautomaten

6
European Plastics and Rubber Machinery
Abhängig von der jeweiligen
Maschinenausstattung ist die aufgeführte
Effizienzklasse erreichbar.
ALPHA
Circular Economy
E - Drive
New Control
XS E
ters, then we added extruders.
But now we can provide complete
recycling lines. We fi nally
named them; it happened just two
months ago. We gave them the
name Omni Recycling lines. We
have various setups depending
on what input material you come
with, " said Monika Gneuss, vice
president of sales and marketing
manager for the Bad Oeynhausen,
Germany-based company.
" That changes our business a
little bit, " she said. " In many cases,
people don't want to pick and
choose. They want a project lead,
a complete line. And we have all
of these components.
" They want to come to us and
say, 'This is our input, and this is
what I want in output, and you give
me a complete line.' We can do that,
so we decided we have to offer it.
We want to do it, " Gneuss said.
" I think it was a gradual development.
But we were ready. Because
we had supplied a few complete
lines before now, " Gneuss said,
while working with other fi rms.
" We just learned more and
Digitalisation
E - Ejector
XS  XS E
more people don't want to think
about the details of the technology, "
she said. " I think at last K
we were seeing more and more of
those requests.
" It's exciting. I think it's exciting
times to sell recycling equipment,
anyway. I'm sure that every booth
that offers something for recycling
is busy, " she said as she sat
in her own company's booth.
" Evolution is always good. You
don't want to stand still, " Gneuss
said.
The company's headquarters
in Bad Oeynhausen has had several
expansions over the years, so
there is enough space to handle
the fabrication of the new lines.
Employment at the fi rm has increased
by a few percent every
year in recent years as the demand
for plastics recycling equipment
continues to grow.
Thanks to an ever-increasing
demand and a tightening supply
of recycled plastics, plastic
recycling machinery companies
across the board are experiencing
good times, including Gneuss, the
marketing manager said.
" Our customers are fi ghting to
get their hands on the material.
So people are now looking for
cheaper, lower-quality
material.
And that means they are looking
for better equipment to handle
the lower-quality reclaim. There's
so much movement, " Gneuss
said. " There's so much going on
within the recycling world. "
GNEUSS
Hall 9,
Booth A22
particularly
Monika Gneuss, vice president of sales and marketing manager of
Gneuss Kunststofftechnik GmbH. The company has launched its fi rst
complete recycling line under the name Omni Recycling Machines.
Plastics News photo by Marco Stepniak


Plastics News - Show Daily - October 24, 2022

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