Wed. May 29th, 2024

A N$24 million (over US$1.2million) investment through a partnership between Coca-Cola Beverages Africa (CCBA) in Namibia and Plastic Packaging has culminated in the opening of a new polyethylene terephthalate (PET) flaking plant in Okahandja which will double the capacity of the only mechanical recycler of plastic waste in the country.
The plant was officially inaugurated by the Minister of Environment, Forestry and Tourism, Pohamba Shifeta.

“The Coca-Cola system aims to drive systemic change through a circular economy for packaging. We are leading the industry to help collect and recycle a bottle or can for every one we sell by 2030. We have a responsibility to help solve complex plastic waste challenges facing our planet and society, and we’re leveraging our scale and reach to achieve our sustainability goals and reduce packaging waste,” said CCBA Chief Public Affairs, Communication and Sustainability Officer, Tshidi Ramogase.

“This facility is an example of how we work with partners across business, government and civil society to support or create closed loop systems to ensure our packaging is collected and recycled or reused.

“Supporting the establishment of a circular economy for packaging has both environmental and economic benefits since recycling has the potential to create jobs and to empower the informal waste collection sector in a circular economy.

“Unlike a traditional linear economy in which packaging is made, used and disposed of; a circular economy preserves the economic value of packaging through robust collection and recycling systems,” said Ramogase.

The completion of this cutting-edge recycling facility will enable Namibia Polymer Recyclers (NPR), a subsidiary of Plastic Packaging, to recycle up to 500 tons per month.

The recycling plant transforms discarded beverage bottles made from PET material into PET flakes with an international market value. The flaking process of post-consumer PET bottles involves sorting, shredding it into PET flakes, hot-washing and drying of flakes, which are then sent for further processing into recycled PET pellets and other end-uses.

This reduces the need to use virgin PET, while diverting waste from landfills and the environment.

“We are investing in infrastructure and exploring ways to support additional recycled PET capacity in each of the regions where we operate. These investments not only provide a source of recycled content for our packaging but also create additional demand for empty packages, driving increased collection.

“At CCBA, we are a proud industry leader in developing increasingly sustainable ways to produce, distribute and sell our products. We use our industry leadership to be part of the solution to achieve positive change and to build a more sustainable future for our planet,” said Ramogase.

By Joy

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