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Trinseo collaborates with Coexpan to validate polystyrene recycling technologies

By Mary Page Bailey |

Trinseo (Berwyn, Pa.) and Coexpan announced that they will collaborate to validate various polystyrene recycling technologies to develop polystyrene containing recycled content that is fit for use in the global dairy industry’s form fill seal (FFS) market. With materials and input supplied by Trinseo, Coexpan will be testing recycled polystyrene across various technologies at its Innovation Technology Center for Rigid and Flexible Packaging).

The dairy FFS packaging market, which has historically preferred the use of polystyrene due to its technical superiority over alternative polymers, has recently seen greater interest in alternative materials owing to misperceptions regarding the circularity and recyclability of polystyrene.

Trinseo and Coexpan, jointly state: “r-PS is a game changer for the FFS market. Polystyrene offers a unique potential for not only closed loop recycling, but also a lower carbon footprint and extended lifecycle due to its simplicity and ease to fully recycle giving polystyrene a major competitive advantage vs all alternatives.  Industrial volumes will come online by the third quarter 2022”.

Dinis Mota, CEO of COEXPAN, commented: “We are very pleased to have established this collaboration with Trinseo, which will allow us to demonstrate the viability of mechanical and chemical recycling processes for Polystyrene, a polymer with excellent properties in terms of efficiency and circularity in the food packaging market category. As a global leader in FFS and thermoforming packaging solutions, working with Trinseo in this regard reinforces our joint sustainability actions.

“Coexpan is very excited about this collaboration. Having seen the crucial role plastic packaging has played this year in terms of food safety and hygiene, we view recycling and circularity as even more crucial. Our research center, INNOTECH, is constantly innovating with recycling and circularity in mind. We do not launch a product without first addressing circularity. This partnership provides a unique platform that reaffirms our goal of promoting and achieving a circular economy model”.

Nicolas Joly, Vice President Plastics and Feedstocks at Trinseo, added: “We are very excited about the collaboration of Coexpan and Trinseo. This marks another major milestone on the way to seeing recycled Polystyrene products on shelves. The unique recycling opportunity that Polystyrene offers is now much more broadly recognized, and it is great to be able to collaborate with leaders along the value chain to further expand this recognition. Full circularity for Polystyrene is imminent, and Trinseo is passionately committed to this, but such partnerships are key to accelerating the transition to circular economy and contributing to the European Commission’s recycling goal.”

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