(‘converters’ are manufacturers who make finished or semi-finished products, such as parts for vacuum cleaners, sometimes on behalf of brand owners)
Alexandre Dangis is another key strategist and influencer in Europe and until 2018 was also the MD of Plastics Recycler’s Europe. He makes some astonishing revelations on the fact that the EU plastics recyclers influenced China to ban poor quality imports to support the EU audit certification system for plastics recycling.
He thinks the only way forward to achieve the high recycling targets set by the EUC of 10million tonnes reused in EU is via polymer value chains working together, developing the markets and solving many problems. He notes the best model forward is in polymer-specific voluntary commitments, like VinylPlus, and that others need to be established for other polymers, or they will not reach the target.
He is unimpressed by brand owners pledging recyclability when what is required are targets for recycled content. He says the path forward is having a controlled way of increasing recycled content. We discuss the future of specific applications, especially packaging formats and polymer types. He concludes by criticising and advocating to changes to the membership and direction of Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) Schemes so that they include converters and the concerns for recovery of material for reuse, and how incinerators are a significant lobby alongside EPR that inhibit circularity.