ITALY – Italian chemical company Versalis, a subsidiary of Eni, has partnered with post-consumer plastic recycling company Forever Plast to develop a plastic recycling plant in Porto Marghera, Italy.

Under the deal, Versalis has acquired the exclusive license to construct an advanced mechanical recycling unit for selected post-consumer plastics from waste sorting, especially polystyrene and high-density polyethylene.

The Forever Plast’s license will enable Versalis to expand its product line from recycled raw materials.

In addition, it will also help to maintain its position in Europe’s mechanical recycling of polystyrene for high-value applications like food packaging.

Scheduled to be operational in 2024, the facility will be located in available areas at the petrochemical site of Porto Marghera.

It will have the capacity to recycle 50,000t of pre-sorted waste a year, which will then be used for producing recycled polymer compounds.

The contract with Forever Plast will also be extended as part of the latest agreement, ensuring the volumes needed for Versalis to expand its line of recycled products.

In 2020, the firm began a partnership to develop polystyrene compounds under the Versalis Revive brand for food packaging, thermal insulation, and the electrical industry with up to 75% recycled material.

Versalis CEO Adriano Alfani said: “With this agreement, we aim to strengthen the transformation of Porto Marghera; a strategic site to achieve our sustainability goals.

The strength and innovativeness of this technology are in the potential it offers to recycle plastics for the food packaging market, which poses the greatest challenge in reaching circularity, and consolidates our European leadership in polymer recycling.”

Versalis began building a mechanical recycling hub at Porto Marghera in 2021 after purchasing Ecoplastic’s technology and infrastructure.

The technology employs a pre-treated, expanded polystyrene-based raw material as feedstock.

All the activities related to the project, including the authorization process, are currently in progress.

Meanwhile, the company had launched two new projects to shift to circular industrial packaging.

The projects (Bag to Bag and Liner to Liner) aim to collect and recycle industrial polyethylene packaging bags before returning them to the recycling system.

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