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Flexible Packaging in a Circular Economy (FIACE)


A research and development project, FIACE has three aims:

1. Mapping the current flexible packaging supply chain to demonstrate that flexible packaging adds value, particularly in relation to resource efficiency and waste prevention.

2. Understanding the hurdles in the mechanical recycling of flexible packaging and suggesting areas of opportunity to further close the loop.

3. Applying the group learning on two examples to see how circularity can be realized and the subsequent challenges in doing so.

Effective January 2017, all project work will be transferred to CEFLEX to held develop and grow insights for application across all of Europe.

Key learnings

  • Flexible packaging was found to add significant value to the supply chain as it relates to resource efficiency and waste prevention.
  • Collection in Europe is very heterogenous. Flexible packaging is often not considered sufficiently “valuable’ by national Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) schemes to be widely collected. Collection is a pre-requisite to higher recycling. This needs to be addressed in order to increase the yield of secondary markets.
  • Recycling presents many challenges, including further sorting and the blending of plastic resins for consistent properties/quality. Advances in recycling are possible and will likely be facilitated by improvements in the upstream infrastructure (collection/sortation) through the quality and quantity of the sorted bales of post consumer flexible packaging.

Additional Information

This project was previously managed by SLOOP Consulting.

Additional Partners include:

  • Attero
  • Borealis
  • Bosch Packaging
  • Constantia Flexibles
  • DuPont
  • Dow Chemical Company
  • Flexible Pacakging Europe
  • Henkel
  • Huhtamaki
  • Mtm Plastics
  • Nestle
  • Siegwerk
  • Tonsmeier
  • TU Delft
  • Urban Mining Corp.
  • Unilever

Report: Mapping Flexible Packaging in a Circular Economy

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