Different plastics have different recycling capabilities:
The recyclability of a packaging depends on the following aspects and questions
- Which plastics does the packaging consist of?
- Is the plastic separated or separable from other materials?
- What can the plastic scanner detect in the recycling plant?
PE (polyethylene), PP (polypropylene) and PET (polyethylene terephthalate):PET, PP, PE have a high recyclability. Recycled PP in particular can keep up with new plastics in terms of quality. Accordingly, these plastics are the least problematic, provided they reach the recycling plant.
PS (polysystrol) and O (other plastics):Mostly more solid packaging materials. These cannot be processed by the plant.Mixed plastic packaging and composite materials are not recycled:
It becomes difficult when plastics are mixed. The scanner in the recycling plant will not be able to identify the plastic. As a result, it ends up with the leftovers. The best example is the yoghurt pot. As soon as the aluminium lid on the yoghurt pot is not removed, it cannot be recycled and ends up in the incinerator.
Composite materials unfortunately cannot be separated into their individual components at the moment either, making proper recycling impossible.Plastics are very sensitive to contamination, which is an obstacle to recycling. This means that they must be washed properly and then sorted very precisely. PE may only be recycled together with other PE of the same type, PP may only be mixed with PP, and so on. The reason for this is that plastics cannot be mixed with each other.
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