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Dow’s Indian partnership targets plastic waste

Recycling post-consumer plastic waste as polyethylene (PE) film is the goal of a new partnership between the global Dow group and an Indian recycling company.

Dow has signed a memorandum of understanding with Lucro Plastecycle to develop and launch a closed-loop packaging solution to help enable a circular economy in India. The move reflects a new sustainability target from Dow for one million tonnes of plastics to be collected, reused or recycled by 2030.

Under the agreement, Lucro, a specialist in recycling flexible plastic film waste, will use its trademark Plast-E-Cycle to develop and manufacture film structures by processing plastic using Dow’s virgin resins.

‘This approach could also reduce carbon emissions when compared to virgin PE resins and as a result could contribute to helping converters and brands to meet their sustainability goals,’ says Dow.

The first application will be in collation shrink films, a form of secondary packaging commonly used for bottles, cans, and liquid cartons, and is expected to be available in the India market later this year. Later, the partners will explore additional applications including shipping sacks, e-commerce bags and non-food packaging.

‘Scrap packaging is one of the country’s highest contributors of plastic waste and we look forward to this collaboration helping to promote the adoption of sustainable solutions amongst brand owners and manufacturers, and contribute to a reduction in plastics entering the environment as waste,’ says Bambang Candra, Asia Pacific commercial vice president, Dow packaging and specialty plastics.

‘Finding value in flexible waste is key for the circular economy to set new standards for the flexible packaging industry and create a viable circular system for flexible plastics.’

Lucro’s trademark Plast-E-Cycle process, which converts plastic waste into granules for recyclable and compostable products, has won support from Circulate Capital’s Ocean Fund which is dedicated to preventing plastic waste entering the ocean and advancing the circular economy in South and Southeast Asia.

Ujwal Desai, co-founder and managing director of Lucro says the company was founded on the belief that value in mismanaged plastic waste could be found through recycling. ‘With intent, effort and collaboration across the entire value chain, we can define and build a new plastic value chain that ensures the material is reused and does not end up in the environment,’ he says.

‘Our partnership with Dow provides us additional expertise to develop high quality, innovative and recycled-content flexible film for businesses.’

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