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Eastman Secures PET Waste Stream to Feed $1 Billion Molecular Recycling Facility

Italian recycler Dentis Group will send 30,000 tons of post-consumer PET waste annually to Eastman's facility in France, the world’s largest material-to-material molecular recycling plant once it is fully operational.

Geoff Giordano

February 15, 2024

2 Min Read
recycling bales
Image courtesy of Eastman

At a Glance

  • Eastman has secured over 70% of feedstock needed for its recycling plant in Normandy
  • Recycling capacity ultimately will reach 200,000 tons of virgin-quality material annually
  • Using its polyester renewal technology, Eastman says it will produce materials with up to 80% fewer greenhouse gas emissions

Specialty materials company Eastman has secured a 30,000-ton-per-year stream of post-consumer PET waste to feed its pioneering $1 billion molecular recycling facility in France.

That material will come from three European mechanical recycling facilities belonging to the Dentis Group, an Italian firm that specializes in recovering PET packaging waste.

"We are very happy to enter into this agreement with Dentis/Nord Pal Plast, which exemplifies Eastman's commitment to collaboration and our dedication to working alongside mechanical recyclers to tackle the plastic waste crisis," said Brad Lich, Eastman's executive vice president and chief commercial officer. "This partnership is a testament to our shared goal of reducing plastic waste and advancing the circular economy. With over 70% of the feedstock secured for our upcoming recycling plant in Normandy, including materials typically rejected by mechanical recyclers, this agreement represents a significant element of our feedstock availability and reinforces our commitment to sustainable solutions."

Eastman’s planned molecular recycling facility is initially scheduled to recycle up to 160,000 metric tons of hard-to-recycle plastic waste annually. After two phases of expansion, capacity will expand to 200,000 tons of virgin-quality material a year — making it the world’s largest material-to-material molecular recycling plant. 

Related:Eastman to Build World’s Largest Advanced Recycling Facility in France

"We are very pleased to enter into this agreement with Eastman since our group is strongly committed to promoting a continuous transition from a linear to a circular economy in the packaging market," said Corrado Dentis, Dentis/Nord Pal Plast CEO. "This partnership contributes to create a standing valuable platform toward PET waste reduction, making mechanical and chemical recycling effectively complementary toward the achievements in European plastic recycling rates."

Once operational in 2025, the plant will feature:

  • An innovation center to advance alternative recycling methods and applications for curbing plastic waste incineration.

  • Units for preparing mixed plastic waste for processing.

  • A methanolysis unit to depolymerize waste.

  • Polymer lines to create high-quality materials for packaging, textiles, and specialty applications.

Using its polyester renewal technology, Eastman says it will produce materials with up to 80% fewer greenhouse gas emissions.

About the Author(s)

Geoff Giordano

Geoff Giordano is a tech journalist with more than 30 years’ experience in all facets of publishing. He has reported extensively on the gamut of plastics manufacturing technologies and issues, including 3D printing materials and methods; injection, blow, micro and rotomolding; additives, colorants and nanomodifiers; blown and cast films; packaging; thermoforming; tooling; ancillary equipment; and the circular economy. Contact him at [email protected].

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