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Adelaide Resource Recovery recycles plastic to China

Australian recycling company Adelaide Resource Recovery is experiencing a strong demand for its waste plastic, exporting over 500 tonnes to China since last year.waste plastic export

Adelaide Resource Recovery (ARR), which operates from Adelaide’s Wingfield Recycling Centre, has exported over 500 tonnes of cleaned and baled waste plastics over the last nine months, waste that would normally be sent to landfill. The plastic waste ranges from soft plastics, such as carry bags, to hard plastics, such as the strapping used to bind construction materials.

Export numbers have grown since companies began to realise that waste plastic can function as a replacement for raw virgin plastics, according to ARR sales and marketing manager Hugh Hocking.

“Once our customers receive it, they ‘pelletise’ the plastic, so that it comes out looking like granules. For them, it’s a replacement for virgin raw plastic,” Mr Hocking said.

“Our waste plastic is used in a range of new products ranging from manufacturing automotive components to construction materials such as flooring strapping and buckets,” Mr Hocking added.

“As the price of oil goes up, so does the price of raw material plastics: Demand has grown as companies have begun to realise they can make new products from recycled plastics. We now regularly have people calling us to ask if they can buy our plastic.”

The increasing demand has also benefited ARR employment, providing a greater number of jobs within the company, says Mr Hocking.

“For ARR, the beauty of this new business is that this waste plastic would normally go to landfill, which would cost us money. With some plastics selling for up to $500 a tonne, this way it actually earns us income and it’s doing the right thing for the environment.”

As well as providing a full-time job for the baler operator, ARR’s waste plastic export operation has created demand for additional labour on the sorting line, where plastics are extracted from the general waste stream received at the ARR Wingfield operation.

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Julia Clarke

Julia Clarke

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