SABIC, a global leader in the chemical industry, has announced the successful roll-out of another project as part of its TRUCIRCLE™ program to accelerate the implementation of a circular plastic economy. Allied Bakeries, a major UK based supplier of bakery products, has introduced bread bags made by St. Johns Packaging using SABIC’s certified circular polyethylene (PE) in the packaging of their Kingsmill No Crusts 50/50. Following the kick-off of the joint project in November 2020, the trial phase was completed in May 2021 at the St. Johns Packaging production site in China and Kingsmill introduced the bags made from PE film with certified circular polymers content to UK stores in September 2021.
The bags are made by St. Johns Packaging, a vertically integrated manufacturer of flexible packaging products with operations around the world, using a PE resin grade from SABIC. The bags incorporate a 30 percent content of recycled feedstock from post-consumer waste. Using advanced recycling, the used and mixed plastic is converted into pyrolysis oil which is then used in the production of new polymers with the same purity and quality as traditional virgin plastics.
“For such solutions to work in the long-term, the partners in the material value chain must closely collaborate,” says Abdullah Al-Otaibi, General Manager, ETP & Market Solutions at SABIC. “With our TRUCIRCLE program, we are pushing for innovative business models to transform our industry from a linear to a circular one and help prevent the valuable material of end-of-life plastic applications from being wasted. Within a relatively short time, this remarkable joint project has shown what can be achieved to make this vision come true if all players work together to maximize post-consumer plastic recycling and sustainability.”
SABIC’s circular materials are produced using mass balance accounting according the International Sustainability & Carbon Certification (ISCC) PLUS program which follows a set of predefined and transparent rules for tracking the material flow across complex supply chains from the feedstock to the final application.
Chris Craig, Joint MD at Allied Bakeries said, “At Kingsmill we’re fully committed to finding ways to address the plastic challenge that all food producers are facing. Of course, this is just one of our products, but it’s an important step that shows how food manufacturers and packaging suppliers are working together to bring about much needed change. We really need more soft plastics to be recycled so that there is more material available for projects like this. We want everyone in the UK to know that bread bags can and should be recycled by taking them to larger stores, but what we really need is for the UK Government to bring forward the date when soft plastics like bread bags can be recycled as part of home kerbside collections.”
“St. Johns Packaging is truly committed to developing sustainable and economically viable packaging solutions for the baking industry, while at the same time reducing food and plastic waste. The incorporation of recycled content has been a key area of focus over the past few years. By supporting the circular economy, giving value to plastics and promoting its use into other packaging products, we hope to contribute efforts to tackle the enormous challenge of improving recycling rates and finding solutions to the plastic waste issue. We welcome the advanced recycling route offered by SABIC as an opportunity to make a meaningful contribution to the circularity of plastics”, adds Marc Leclair, President at St. Johns Packaging. “In collaboration with strong global partners, this breakthrough project is demonstrating the feasibility of reusing plastic waste in safe food-grade packaging rather than losing its value to landfill or incineration.”
SABIC’ s certified circular polymers form part of its TRUCIRCLE portfolio and services for circular solutions that also include design for recyclability, mechanically recycled products, certified renewables products from bio-based feedstock and closed loop initiatives to recycle plastic back into high quality applications and help prevent valuable used plastics from becoming waste.