Sandra Wärenhed | 2023-03-24
Plastic has become one of the most widely used materials in the world. In fact, one million plastic bottles are purchased every minute and up to five trillion plastic bags are used worldwide every year. In total, half of all plastic produced is designed for single-use purposes, meaning that they are used once and then thrown away.
At Orwak, we believe that recycling and extending the life cycle of plastic are critical for our planet. If plastic isn’t going anywhere, the least we can do is be conscious about how we’re using it.
What is PET plastic and what are its benefits?
To that end, allow us to introduce you to polyethylene terephthalate, or PET plastic. PET is commonly used in the creation of beverage bottles or materials for food packaging given that it doesn’t react with food or liquids that it comes in contact with.
Additionally, PET is lighter than other materials like glass or cartons. It is resistant to external agents and abrasion, harder to break, and flexible. It’s also transparent, which makes it perfect for beverage containers to allow consumers to see what is inside of the bottles. While it is the most common plastic used for soft drink containers, many other industries are still using other types of plastics.
Should you consider switching your packaging to PET?
One major issue with other types of plastic packaging is that some components aren’t recyclable. For example, you may be able to recycle a plastic tray but the lid or film are non-recyclable. The result is that these plastics often aren’t recycled or disposed of correctly. Consumers don’t want to spend time dismantling components before throwing them in the recycling can.
PET simplifies the process thanks to the fact that it is 100% recyclable and consumers can throw away the whole product. It is actually the most widely recycled plastic on Earth. The result is that less plastic ends up in landfill or incineration. Additionally, when you dispose of PET plastic correctly it can be recycled to make more PET plastic products. The product life cycle is therefore continuous and PET helps reduce plastic waste that is common with other single-use plastics. It is a sustainable solution with a lower carbon footprint than other plastics.
What are the benefits of recycling PET?
PET is also an excellent option for packaging material from an economic standpoint. It has a lower production cost than other products, is easy to clean and causes less water consumption. It creates a high number of jobs through the production, recovery and recycling processes required to transform and recover it, as well. Another great thing about PET is that it can be recycled numerous times. Not to mention that almost every recycling program in the U.S. accepts PET materials.
According to one study, for every pound of recycled PET flake used there is an 84% reduction in the amount of energy used and a 71% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. As with recycling any materials, recycling PET results in a conservation of raw materials. Additionally, less energy is required when converting recycled PET to flakes or pellets than other plastics. And, of course, less energy used means fewer greenhouse gasses are emitted.
If you’re currently using PET packaging or considering making the switch, we’ll be here to help you find waste management and recycling solutions. Let’s save the planet together one bottle at a time.