Imagine a world where plastic is fully recyclable. Every single bit of plastic gets fully repurposed and given a new life. Well, this is not merely a dream for the French company Carbios – it is their vision.
Much of today’s product packaging relies on PET (polyethylene terephthalate) plastics. A tiny portion of it is currently being recycled: just under 30% in the US. The new approach that Carbios is looking at applying is bio-recycling enzymes that will require the construction of a new recycling plant. The process is envisioned to take just a few hours.
Not only is this in the core of their business plan for the company, but they have also made a step towards making it a reality by securing the funding they need. You can imagine why so many corporations like Nestlé, PepsiCo, and others are among the multinational businesses that rely heavily on the use of plastic packaging would be interested in the success of Carbio’s green technology.
But just how does bio recycling really work? In the French-based company’s lab, plastic water bottles and polyester shirts get broken down to monomers (the basic building blocks of the material) with the help of water, enzymes, and heat. Then, the monomers get purified and can be used for the production of new plastic, even into entirely different object. The final product from it will look and perform the same as if it is made the traditional way – from petroleum. And it’s an infinite cycle.
Big companies and manufacturers are under a lot of pressure from consumers to adopt greener methods and this bio recycling innovation comes in handy. Many of them have already jumped on the bandwagon and are supporting the startup.
The future is here. Your next Adidas trainers might be former polyester clothes, carpets, or food trays. Carbios’ promising technology is marching into the new decade with a hope for a cleaner and more effective plastic recycling solutions than ever before.