Packaging company Visy has signed a multi-year partnership to recycle plastic bottles for Australia’s infrastructure instead of landfill.
Visy uses food grade recycled Polyethylene terephthalate (rPET) for its plastic bottles, which geosynthetic material manufacturer Geofabrics will purchase to make geotextiles for use in Australia’s road, rail, and mining industries.
Australians create around 660,000 tonnes of plastic waste each year, while traditional geotextiles are made from unsustainable virgin materials.
Geofabrics’ geotextiles are Australian made, replacing offshore sourced polymer with Australian sourced recycled polymer – direct from Visy’s recycling plant in Smithfield NSW.
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Geofabrics Australasia Managing Director and CEO Dennis Grech said the relationship between the two companies is a win for Australia.
“For the first time, Australian sourced recycled plastic bottles are converted into geotextiles that build Australia’s national infrastructure; the roads we drive on, our rail networks and our mining assets,” Grech said.
“Why does this matter? We are taking plastic waste out of landfills and out of our waterways and oceans and, in doing so, we are building Australia’s recycling industry and creating jobs for all Australians.
“Sustainability is at the heart of everything we do at Geofabrics and Visy is a wonderful and supportive partner in fulfilling our ambitions for a greener Australia.”
Visy Chief Operating Officer Mark De Wit said the new partnership is an excellent example of how Visy’s innovation approach can work with its partners’ product development processes to create practical and sustainable solutions that unlock value on multiple levels.
“Geofabrics are making great progress in the sustainability space and, specifically, through the innovative use of rPET in manufacturing a range of products that will be deployed in building Australia’s key infrastructure,” De Wit said.
“Visy has a long history of developing technologies that change the face of the industry, and our success is cemented through collaborations with like-minded businesses, such as Geofabrics, who have a strong orientation to sustainability and a commitment to making a positive long-term contribution to the wider community.
“Together this new partnership helps us make further steps towards strengthening Australia’s recycling industry, while creating local jobs.”